Colorado State has so many green initiatives, we’ll need a whole week to celebrate sustainability. In honor of Earth Day, CSU dedicated the entire week following Earth Day to events that celebrate sustainability and environmentally conscientious practices.
The week kicked off with the Earth Day Festival, which took place in the Lory Student Center’s Sutherland Community Garden. This is an annual event that has grown each year, and this year’s festival featured a live band, The Salmon Famine, as well as multiple tables set up by different organizations. Housing & Dining Services had a compost display, Eco-Leaders had a sustainability board set up for students to make commitments to becoming more sustainable in their daily lives, and there were multiple informational booths and environmental petitions being circulated.
Colorado State is committed to sustainability every day of the year, but Earth Week highlights and informs the community about the ways the University stays dedicated to environmental initiatives on campus.
Evan Salzman, student and lead event programmer at RamEvents, explained the terrarium building activity at the RamEvents table. The activity allowed students to choose succulent plants and and pots to decorate with stones and shells. “We are looking to provide an enriching and entertaining experience for all CSU students on Earth Day. Activities like this really help students get interested and excited about sustainability and Earth Week,” Salzman said.
“We are looking to provide an enriching and entertaining experience for all CSU students on Earth Day. Activities like this really help students get interested and excited about sustainability and earth week.” – Evan Salzman, lead event programmer at RamEvents.
Colorado Sate is the first university in the world to have its sustainability efforts rewarded platinum twice by STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System). STARS is an independent program that measures comprehensive sustainability efforts at more than 800 universities around the world and is considered the most prestigious measurement of sustainability performance in higher education.
In embracing its sustainability mission, the LSC has pursued LEED certifications. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is an internationally recognized rating system for design, construction, and operation of high-performing sustainable buildings. There are four levels of certification under the LEED system: Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. The LSC currently has LEED Silver certifications for the North End (Transit Center); Central and South (Theatre) ; this establishes the LSC as a “green” building on campus. From creating more waste diversion options by composting to supporting the sustainable agriculture movement and by buying locally produced meats, cheeses, beers, and produce to serve in the Aspen Grille dining room, the LSC continues to make improvements toward sustainability, according to Facilities Management.
Areas in the LSC that are LEED certified:
- Transit Center: Achieved LEED Gold in 2007. First LEED Gold building on campus.
- Lory Student Center Revitalization: Achieved LEED Silver in 2016
- Lory Student Center Theatre Renovation: Achieved LEED for Commercial Interiors Gold in 2012
The 2013 LSC renovations also helped the building become more sustainable. Key outcomes from the LSC renovations include:
- 17% energy cost reduction
- 35% water use reduction
- 56% of existing building maintained
- 21% recycled/salvaged materials
- 100% of the building’s electricity offset by the purchase of renewable energy credits (RECs)
- Educational signage to create occupant awareness of the building’s high-performance features and green building strategy
About the Lory Student Center
The Lory Student Center is dedicated to promoting a supportive, creative, and inclusive learning environment by developing campus community through a diversity of high‐quality, student‐centered programs and services.