As a signatory of the ACUPCC and the Talloires Declaration, a member of the Founding Circle of the Billion Dollar Green Challenge, and the only university in Michigan with a student sustainability fee, Western Michigan University (WMU) is committed to building a campus culture of sustainability. In recognition of WMU’s efforts, they received Second Nature’s National Climate Leadership award and Planet Forward’s Sustainability Innovators award in 2014. The Office for Sustainability created a Sustainability Across Research and Teaching initiative to facilitate the integration and infusion of sustainability throughout the curriculum. All major construction projects must achieve a minimum of LEED Silver. The College of Health and Human Services was the first building in higher education to receive LEED Gold-EB and WMU has 11 other LEED-certified facilities. This December the U.S. Green Building Council’s Center for Green Schools named WMU as “2014 Best of Green Schools” recipient. Other measures to improve energy efficiency include a heat recovery system that “reclaims heat from the lce Arena chillers and uses it to heat the building's Olympic-sized swimming pool;” occupancy-based light sensors; the installation of high-efficiency motors and compact fluorescent lighting: and major updates to Dining Services HVAC, refrigeration, and dish-washing equipment. Twenty one electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, which offer free electricity, have been installed throughout campus to facilitate the purchase of EV and hybrid EVs by the campus community. WMU also keeps an eye on water conservation through measures such as chemical-free water treatment, xeriscaping, low flow showers and faucets, trayless dining, and a pre-consumer “food waste to farmers” pilot. In addition, 32 percent of food expenditures go toward local and/or organic foods. WMU also has a Green Cleaning Policy that ensures that the cleaning products and chemicals used on campus are environmentally friendly. The university offers learning and research-oriented opportunities through the Office for Sustainability, including internships, $75,000 for the Student Sustainability Grant Program (selection for these grants is made by a committee composed solely of students), a permaculture research and demonstration facility, and a residential living, learning sustainability laboratory, the Gibbs House for Environmental Research and Education.
School Has Formal Sustainability Committee
Sustainability-focused degree available
School employs a sustainability officer
Public GHG inventory plan
% food budget spent on local/organic food
Available Transportation Alternatives
Free Or Reduced Price Transit Passes And/Or Free Campus Shuttle
Reduced Parking Fees For Car And Van Poolers
School Adopted A Policy Prohibiting Idling
Data provided by Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), STARS®, as of February, 2014.