Did you know that you can do a free, self-guided, Sustainability Walking Tour right here at Eastern Washington University?
Through our actions such as the promotion of walking and biking, restoration of natural resources, and green buildings, Eastern’s passionate faculty, staff, and students have created many sites on campus that demonstrate our commitment to sustainability. The Sustainability Map and Tour highlights sustainability initiatives and key locations across campus. Now instead of just reading about these sites, you can go experience them directly!
Office of Sustainability in Central Services (CES)
Established in 2016, the Office of Sustainability seeks to serve as a source of sustainability focused initiatives, a central hub of information for sustainable practices at EWU, to engage with community members to promote sustainability in the Inland Northwest, and establish EWU as a leader in sustainability.
Recycling Center (RCC)
All recycling, compost, and trash is processed through the recycling center. Here all materials are sorted, bailed, and sent off to regional collection facilities. In 2017, EWU recycled 250 tons of material. Of that 250 tons, there were 77 tons of cardboard, 1.4 tons of aluminum cans, 21 tons of shredded paper, 31 tons of mixed tin (tin cans), 110 tons of composted material, 1.5 tons of newspaper, and 7 tons of office paper. Check out our Recycling page to learn more! http://inside.ewu.edu/sustainability/recycling/
snyamncut hall was completed in 2013 and was certified silver in 2015. snyamncut is the only LEED certified residence hall on Eastern’s campus. The building’s design, both internally and externally, was purposed to bring awareness about eco-friendly architecture to on-campus students. The building had different features that contributed to its LEED certification, such as the low flush toilets, and natural lighting from the many windows on the building. The natural lighting is an effective way to conserve energy, while also creating a more comfortable atmosphere. If you want to learn more about the specifics of the LEED certification, here is the scorecard: https://www.usgbc.org/projects/ewu-new-residence-hall?view=scorecard
Hargreaves was constructed in the 1930s as Eastern Washington University’s first campus library. In the 1960s it was remodeled and converted into an academic hall. A second remodel was completed in 2009 to restore the building’s historical features. The restoration project reduced water use by 48% through the installation of efficient plumbing fixtures that included dual flush toilets and low-flow faucets, shower heads, and urinals. Water use was further decreased by the installation of an efficient drip irrigation system around the building and plants that require minimal water input replaced those that had a higher water demand. Energy use was significantly reduced by an efficient building shell construction, replacement of older inefficient windows, and upgrades to HVAC and lighting systems. These measures contribute to annual energy use savings of 21%, energy cost savings of 29%, and save EWU approximately $17,000 per year (compared to the base case). The project was certified LEED gold and received an AIA Honor Award. If you want to learn more about the specifics of the LEED certification, here is the scorecard: https://www.usgbc.org/projects/hargreaves-hall-renovation
University Recreation Center (URC)
The URC is a masonry building with metal panels and membrane roofing. High-efficient natural light is used throughout the URC, with special attention given to water savings and energy efficiency. The building’s features include environmentally conscious bathrooms and low maintenance landscaping. The URC became certified LEED gold due to these features. If you want to learn more about the specifics of the LEED certification, here is the scorecard: https://www.usgbc.org/projects/ewu-student-sport-recreation-center There is also a food pantry available in the lower lobby room 103.
Pence Union Building (PUB)
The newly remodeled PUB is now a LEED certified building. The new design reduces the environmental footprint of the building through energy and water efficient infrastructure, an innovative ice melt system, and a rooftop garden.
Patterson Hall (Eastern’s newest and largest academic building) underwent remodeling in 2013. One of the innovative and sustainable projects for Patterson Hall included a water reclamation system. This system operates by collecting rainwater/groundwater which is used for irrigation around the building. After the remodel, Patterson became certified LEED gold due to its eco-friendly construction and landscaping. Some of the innovative and sustainable features you will see are the bicycle racks around the building, the changing rooms that include showers, the light pollution reduction which turns off the lights in rooms when not occupied to save energy, and the bamboo walls which are fast growing trees that can be used instead of other materials. If you want to learn more about the specifics of the LEED certification, here is the scorecard: https://www.usgbc.org/projects/ewu-patterson-hall-renovation?view=scorecard
Interdisciplinary Science Center (ISC)
Construction recently began on EWU’s new science building. Once completed the building will be certified LEED Gold and achieves this designation through unique features including chilled beams and an innovative energy efficient fume hood management system.
Established in the 2011, the Campus Community Garden is maintained and operated by Dining Services and the Office of Sustainability. Much of the food grown here is turned into delicious meals and served in dining locations across campus. Contact the Office of Sustainability to find out how you can get involved! Check out our garden page for more info!
EWU Custodial Services has made a strong push to move towards non-toxic ecofriendly cleaning agents and now almost all cleaning products used across campus fit this designation. A large part of this has been driven by expanded use of the Lotus Pro cleaning system. Lotus Pro is a safe, environmental friendly, and effective alternative to using toxic chemicals for cleaning. The system works by converting oxygen (O2) to ozone (O3) and adding it to tap water. As the solution sanitizes the ozone returns back to oxygen. The aqueous ozone solution can be used to clean and disinfect any surface around campus. The Lotus Pro system was first introduced to EWU in 2011 at the request of Ray Godin and his custodial staff. Results of using the Lotus Pro system have been positive in terms of cleaning results and custodial preference for toxin-free cleaning solutions. In addition to the Lotus Pro system, most of the other products used to clean campus are eco-friendly and non-toxic.
The EWU Food Pantry aims to alleviate hunger and foster a healthy and inclusive community by providing access to nutritious food. Food cabinets are available across campus and will be stocked with nonperishable food, personal hygiene products, and information on other food resources. No personal information is required to use this service. We have six locations including in Showalter Hall across the hall from Rm 105, JFK Library in the basement across from L02, Isle Hall by L101, Sutton Hall across hall from Rm 300, URC Building in Rm 102, and in the PE Classroom Building Rm 118. For more information here is a link to the food pantry page https://inside.ewu.edu/oce/ewu-food-pantries/
Outside lighting has been switched over to long lasting, energy efficient LEDs. Inside lighting is routinely being upgraded to LEDs across campus and all new buildings have LEDs installed from the start. The long life of LEDs not only creates less waste over time, but also require significantly less maintenance compared to other lighting options. The reduction which helps reduce operating costs.
Palouse Prairie Restoration
The Palouse Prairie Restoration project is a plan that seeks to restore EWU farmland to native habitat and preserve natural land on campus that will foster research and educational opportunities, increase biodiversity, and provide recreational space on multi-use trails. Check out the website for more information https://inside.ewu.edu/palouserestoration/
Zero Waste Football Games
EWU has competed in the Game Day Challenge from 2013 through 2016 and significantly improved our performance every year. Game Day Challenge is a competition amongst colleges and universities across the U.S. to see who can divert the most amount material away from landfills, with the ultimate goal of producing zero-waste, during select home football games. To achieve a high diversion rate schools must recycle and compost all appropriate material as well as educate their fan base about reducing the waste they each produce. In 2013 EWU competed in the challenge for 3 games and placed 28th(out of 61 schools) with a 54 % diversion rate. In 2014 EWU competed for 3 games, placing 15th(out of 53 schools) with a diversion rate of 62 %. In 2015 EWU competed in 3 games, two of which we achieved zero-waste (greater than 90 % diversion rate)! This placed us in 4th(out of 59 schools) with an overall diversion rate of 90.2 % and a place on the Game Day Challenge Hall of Fame. In 2016 we competed in 1 game and achieved at diversion of 95.7 %. This was the highest diversion rate of the year and we tied with Ohio University for 1stplace (out of 47 schools)! EWU was invited to the national award ceremony where we received our award for highest diversion rate of 2016. Achieving a zero-waste game is not easy and required a tremendous amount of work by Scott Buck, his employees, and volunteers.
The URC, PUB, and Tawanka have their own compost stations back inside the kitchens where they collect our food scraps. Compost is organic matter that has been decomposed in a process called composting. This process recycles various organic materials - otherwise regarded as waste products - and produces a soil conditioner. Compost is rich in nutrients. Once the food waste is turned into compost some of it ends up in the EWU Garden.
Reclaimed Water Sites
Patterson and Hargreaves both were designed to collect water on their roofs and transfer it into their respective holding tanks. This reclaimed water is then used for irrigation throughout campus.
Water Bottle Fill Stations
Around campus there are more than 80 water bottle fillers so you can easily fill your reusable water bottle and avoid buying bottled water. They were first installed in 2012 in the URC and PHASE. Water bottle fillers in other buildings around campus were installed in August 2014. Since their installation they have filled over 2,300,000 water bottles!
Commute Trip Reduction program is a state wide effort to reduce vehicular air pollution by cutting down the number of single occupancy vehicles driven to campus. As part of student tuition fees and employer contributions all EWU students and employees can use Spokane Transit buses at no additional charge. Just swipe your Eagle ID when you get on the bus and go! Eastern also has a bike repair shop, bike fix-it stations, and multiple bike racks around campus so you can easily ride your bike to and from classes. If you look on the Sustainability Self-Guided Tour Map you can see where the bike shop and stations are located. Patterson and the URC have shower stations so you can quickly rinse off before class if you decide to bike to campus.