Kent State Recognized as Leading University in Environmental Stewardship
Kent State University has been awarded the 2017 Encouraging Environmental Excellence (E3) Silver-level award from the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The award recognizes Kent State as a leading university in environmental stewardship. Melanie Knowles, Kent State’s manager for sustainability, received the award on behalf of the university.
According to the Ohio EPA, the goal of environmental stewardship is to reduce the impact of business or organizational activities on the environment beyond measures required by any permit or rule, produce a better environment and conserve natural resources to result in long-term economic benefits.
“The EPA wants to see organizations that strive for excellence rather than only meeting minimum requirements,” Ms. Knowles says.
Kent State’s Office of Sustainability’s stewardship surrounds the idea of using resources in a wise and efficient way so that resources are still available for future students, says Ms. Knowles.
Sustainability initiatives at Kent State include the solar panels on the Kent State Field House, which generate 500,000 kilowatt hours of energy per year; the Kent State University Airport’s sustainability plan; stormwater management; and an environmentally friendly transportation initiative that includes bus and Flashfleet bike-sharing systems.
Kent State submitted an application in October 2016 and went through a series of site visits and questionnaires before receiving the award at the EPA’s Sustainability Conference.