For more than a decade members of the Belmont University community have been doing their part to be good stewards of God's Creation. We want to positively impact the environment and encourage the campus at large to "go green." From recycling efforts to educational initiatives, Belmont students, faculty and staff have shown their commitment to increasing the university's environmental sustainability.
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Belmont Goes Green Launched
In March 2007, those efforts took on a more public face when Belmont launched "Belmont Goes Green" to encourage greater environmental awareness on campus. Belmont President Dr. Bob Fisher signed the Talloires Declaration of the Association of University Leaders for a Sustainable Future (USLF). In signing the declaration, the university presidents agreed to increase awareness of environmentally sustainable development, create an institutional culture of sustainability and educate for environmentally responsible citizenship, among other efforts.
Since the declaration, Belmont has worked to implement more eco-friendly initiatives. The Belmont Environmental Initiative Council was created to coordinate environmental efforts on campus. Religion professor Dr. Judy Skeen, founder and director of the BEI Council, said, "My goal for the future is that everyone who works and studies on Belmont's campus will learn how to care for the earth, conserve resources, consume responsibly and live in sustainable ways. Belmont's community practices are the best way to gain visibility and begin behavior change."
Current Belmont Goes Green endeavors:
- The Randall and Sadie Baskin Center is LEED-certified at the Gold level. Click here to read more.
- BLINK Level 2 Wall Mount charging stations in the Curb and North Garages. The electric vehicle chargers are free and open to the public. Click here to read more.
- Belmont puts "green roof" on McWhorter Hall: The only large extensive green roof on an educational facility in Nashville, the green roof serves several purposes including a reduction in the "heat island effect," which refers to the trend of generally higher temperatures in urban areas as opposed to more suburban areas. The green roof lowers air temperatures which helps reduce that effect. Green roofs also provide natural habitats for wildlife (birds, insects, etc.) and reduce pollution by holding pollutants rather than washing into groundwater, sewer or drainage systems. In addition, the green roof can retain some rainwater for irrigation and can reduce the heating/cooling costs by providing lower temperatures around air intake systems. McWhorter Hall is the Project Innovations 2011 Merit Winner for New Construction.
- Lila D. Bunch Library boiler system upgraded to CREST Condensing Boiler for an average monthly fuel savings of 24.5 percent
- Belmont University Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) developed a business plan for the nonprofit Spring Back Recycling, which employees homeless and former convicts to recycle mattresses. In the first six months, more than 1,700 mattresses were disassembled and recycled. Read more or view the WKRN-TV report.
- Sustainability Task Force formed in 2010, bringing together student, faculty, staff and administrative leaders to implement new initiatives to make Belmont a more green, sustainable institution.
- Reduced electricity usage by 9% over last year across campus
- Recycling of office paper across campus
- Removal of bottled water on campus
- Composting all Belmont yard waste
- Community garden initiative
- Use of green cleaning products in Plant Ops
- Sodexho's discontinuing use of trays in cafeteria ( for water conservation) and ending use of non-recyclable plastics
- New construction will include greener heating/cooling temperature control methods and improved water conservation
- Meters installed in all dorms to track electricity usage
- Belmont was a lead university in Environmental Protection Agency effort to identify and remediate potential sources of environmental problems on campus. Environmental Management System (EMS) program instituted on campus. (This may be Belmont's single most important initiative in reducing long-term environmental damage.)
- In partnership with Blessed Earth.org, we have hosted several Christian Faith Development convocations on how to be good stewards of the Creation.
- Additional recycling bins placed in Belmont apartment complexes; residents are encouraged to take advantage of this and dramatically increase their volume of recycling.
- New student organization Slow Food Belmont formed to practice and educate about urban gardening and so much more! See Slow Food Belmont's Facebook page for more info.
- Residence Life sold about $15,000 worth of energy star products to students. They are looking to expand the product offering in the future.
- Lights in vending machines have been turned off.
- Belmont was published in the Green Awakenings report on sustainability at Christian universities. The report was done by the nonprofit grassroots organization Renewal, and the Belmont ONE Club wrote the section on Belmont.
- WeCars are available for students to use. They are located in the parking spaces between the Curb Event Center and Maddox/Wright Residence Halls.
- Additional recycling bins for new and old buildings on the main campus are being ordered.
- ONE Club is starting a student educational program on recycling, and potentially one for how to ride the bus
Recent Belmont Goes Green endeavors:
- University partnered with Metro Transit Authority (MTA) for students, faculty and staff to use public transportation to and from Belmont for free
- The Higher Education Sustainability Conference held at Belmont Spring 2007
- Recycling program started almost a decade ago and will expand campus wide Summer 2008 and be sustained by campus systems
- Environmental Studies program implemented with service-learning and internship components available
- Environmental club for students activated (Our Natural Environment student organization)
- Retrofitted light fixtures to produce energy star upgrades
- Numerous academic lectures/convocations held each year on environmental initiatives
- Move-in day recycling events annually contribute more than a ton of recyclable cardboard through partnership with Metro Public Works
- New building proposals include efforts for greater sustainability
- Environmental awareness promoted to faculty, staff and students through campus postcards and posters
- The Graduation Pledge Alliance (GPA) invites students to consider the social and environmental consequences of any future employment
- Belmont honored with the 1998 Tennessee Higher Education Environmental Stewardship Award from the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation
- Earth Day celebrations held since 2003
- Belmont Environmental Initiative (BEI) council established in May 2006
|For More Info Use the Links Below|
|Talloires Declaration||Belmont Dining Green Initiatives||Email the Office of Communications|