Now that you've learned how industries and corporations are developing internal energy and sustainability policies as well as influencing those broader policies which will affect their businesses, let's take a more in depth look at institutional policy by exploring what Penn State is doing.
Penn State has been a leader in the adoption of green energy purchases, energy efficiency updates on campus, responsible purchasing, and recycling on campus for many years. With over 50,000 students, faculty, and staff on the University Park campus alone, the University really does function as an autonomous entity in a lot of ways. Behind the scenes, a whole host of operations staff works diligently to ensure that campus is running safely, efficiently, and economically. More recently, the University has made a big effort to promote all of the sustainable practices they are implementing and has been encouraging the PSU community to help them reduce energy consumption. In this case study, we'll look both at what they're doing and why it's so important.
You're part of the Penn State community, and we want you to know about all the activities going on across our campuses to be environmental stewards. From composting food waste to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, Penn State utilizes its in-house expertise in climate change, energy, and environmental science to inform its daily operations.
This video, produced by WPSU, highlights some of the sustainability efforts at Penn State - in teaching, research, and operations. As you will see, Penn State is a leader in all three areas.
Sustainable Penn State (7:37)
Want to know more about something you saw in the video? Check out the links below!
Sustainability cannot be owned by any one department; instead it is a mindset from which all our departments must operate. Visit the Sustainability Institute's website to learn about the collective actions across our campuses related to sustainability.
Institutes of Energy and the Environment - PSIEE is the central coordinating structure for energy and environmental research, education, and outreach at PSU.
EMS Energy Institute - The EMS Energy Institute conducts research for developing advanced sciences and technologies for conversion and utilization of energy resources and for energy-related environmental protection.
H2E Center - The H2E Center is Penn State's hydrogen energy research center. In addition to being a focal point for activities on hydrogen production, storage, and utilization systems going on at Penn State, the Center also facilitates the development of hydrogen-based technologies.
Environment and Natural Resources Institute (ENRI) - Center for Policy Research in Environment, Energy, and Community, ENRI seeks to improve understanding and management of living systems, landscapes, and human-environment interactions with the object of sustaining and enhancing ecosystem services and human well being.
Sustainability Institute - The Penn State Sustainability Institute leads and supports campus sustainability initiatives through collaborative project development, implementation, and evaluation across the entire Penn State system. To learn more about what Penn State is doing to create a more sustainable campus environment, visit their site and find out how you can become involved. ESP has had several students complete inventories with the Sustainability Institute!
Office of Physical Plant (OPP) Energy - Office of Physical Plant (OPP) OPP keeps the university functioning. From repairs and routine maintenance, to utility operation and trash collection, OPP is responsible for all the services that keep the campus running smoothly. OPP works diligently to ensure that buildings and people are using our energy and other resources wisely and actively seeks to increase participation in conservation, recycling, and other environmental initiatives. Engineering Services in OPP is responsible for tracking the university's greenhouse gas emissions as well.
Finance and Business Environmental Stewardship - Focuses on funding environmental initiatives across campus including 2 positions- the Director of Sustainable Initiatives and an Environmental Purchasing Specialist for Procurement Services. They also provide funding to energy saving projects and seek to enhance building energy performance.
PSU's Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventories - PSU's Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventories Visit this site to learn more about the emissions profile for each of the Penn State campuses as well as the university as a whole. You can also learn about the university's initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.