Environmental Stewardship

This page features some of the environmental stewardship efforts at Shippensburg University. If you are aware of a program or project that is not featured here, we want to know about it. Please contact Dr. Heather Sahli to have your project added to this page.

The ESC has also assembled a presentation (PDF) that highlights many environmental stewardship efforts on campus.


Bottle ImageSU Recycles

Shippensburg University has a comprehensive recycling program and appropriately labeled recycling containers are found in every building on campus. We recycle aluminum cans, corrugated cardboard, paper, newspaper, glass (clear, brown and green) and plastic--see this page for comprehensive recycling guidelines. For example, in 2006 SU recycled more than 63 tons of corrugated cardboard. We also participate in Recyclemania, a nationwide recycling competition among universities. The University also provides community recycling bins which are located in the parking lot of the Steam Plant on North Prince Street.

SU Celebrates Earth Day

Earth ImageSU hosts an Earth Day celebration each year. The student environmental club (enviro@ship.edu) spearheads the event. Join the environmental club's Facebook group to keep up with events.

 Burd Run Interdisciplinary Research Laboratory 

Burd Run ImageA cooperative effort among faculty from the Departments of Geography-Earth Science, Biology and Teacher Education, BRIRL incorporates a stream restoration project with interdisciplinary research and education.

Ship Shape Day

Every year, Shippensburg University students, faculty and staff help clean up Shippensburg as part of Ship Shape Day.

Biodiesel Kiln ImageBiodiesel

Since 2006, Professor Ben Culbertson (Art Department) has been collecting all of the waste vegetable oil on campus and making biodiesel. He has hand fabricated a set of collection containers that are in use at every dining facility on campus. In 2010, Professor Culbertson embarked on a project with several ceramics students to design, build and test a biodiesel-fueled burner system to fire ceramics kilns. To date, they have successfully built and fired a 30 cubic foot kiln to 2,350 degrees F using biodiesel. The work of Professor Culbertson is saving money for Chartwells, SU's food service vendor, saving energy, and reducing SU's carbon footprint.

Energy Savings by the Computing Technology Center

Did you know that a single data server uses an average of 1,750 KwH of power per year? SU has eighty servers in our data center, and power consumption was becoming unsustainable as our demand for computing resources has continued to grow. In response, the Computing Technology Center (CTC) has adopted server virtualization, which consolidates multiple physical servers into one virtual server. For each server virtualized, 4 tons of carbon dioxide emissions are reduced--the equivalent of taking 1.5 cars off the highway. Read more...

Luhrs School

Luhrs School ImageThe Luhrs Elementary School is SU's first green building and is designed to meet LEED Silver Certification standards. The school incorporates a site design that minimizes negative impacts on the environment; reduces water consumption through efficient water fixtures; and reduces energy usage by maximizing natural daylight, energy and heat recovery units, and energy efficient lighting. More information about the green building specifications can be found on the Green Building Association of Central Pennsylvania's website.

SU Wind Energy Credits

Shippensburg University, along with many other universities and colleges in Pennsylvania, purchases wind-generated electricity from Pennsylvania wind farms. In 2006, Shippensburg University purchased 868,971 kwh of wind power credits, about 4% of our total electricity use.

PCIEP and Sustainable Scholars

Shippensburg University participates in the Pennsylvania Consortium for Environmental Policy (PCIEP), an organization of universities, colleges and policy makers working to improve environmental policy through cooperation between government and academia.  Dr. Tim Hawkins serves as SU's representative to the PCIEP.  Dr. Hawkins is also coordinating a related effort to launch a Sustainable Scholars project at SU.  Sponsored by the Sustainable Energy Fund of Central Eastern Pennsylvania, the Sustainable Scholars program is a sustainable energy education initiative that offers funding, incentives and academic credit to design, build and operate photo-voltaic-powered solar installations on university and college campuses.  Contact Dr. Hawkins for more information about this effort.

Greenhouse Gas Accounting

Shippensburg University was the first PASSHE school to complete a greenhouse gas assessment. See the Facilies Management and Planning Page for recent updates regarding the Go-Green Measurement and Analysis.

Veggies ImageCommunity Garden Project

Shippensburg University recently started a an organic community garden initiative for faculty and staff.

Campus Farm

In Fall 2012 a group of faculty, students, and staff started a larger campus farm.  The entire campus community is able to get involved in sustainable agriculture practices, and produce grown on the campus farm are donated to Shippensburg Produce Outreach and sold to Dining Services, increasing sustainability on the S.U. campus.

Dining Services

As one of the largest waste-generating departments on campus, Chartwells is doing a lot to reduce waste. One iniative, trayless dining, has reduced waste by 2,500 pounds per week and is also reducing water and energy use. Check the Chartwell's sustainability page for updates on eco-friedly initaitves in Dining Services.