Saturday, Aug 17, 2019

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Ohio University Composting Facility

Staff at the Ohio University Compost Facility work to turn the University's food waste into usable soil. OHIO's compost facility is the largest in-vessel system of any college or university in the nation.

Photographer: Jillyann Burns/Ohio University

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Ohio University recognized internationally for campus sustainability achievements

OHIO has received a STARS Silver rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education

Ohio University has been recognized with its second STARS Silver rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) for its campus sustainability achievements. The University earned its first STARS Silver rating in 2015.

STARS, the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System, measures and encourages sustainability in all aspects of higher education. With more than 800 participants in 30 countries, AASHE’s STARS program is the most widely recognized framework in the world for publicly reporting comprehensive information related to a college or university’s sustainability performance.

“This international recognition underscores the vast progress that our University’s sustainability initiatives and sustainability-related strategic priorities have achieved in recent years,” said Ohio University President M. Duane Nellis. “Such progress would not have become a reality without the hard work and dedication of so many of OHIO’s students, faculty and staff.”

STARS participants report achievements in five overall areas: 1) academics 2) engagement, 3) operations, 4) planning and administration and 5) innovation and leadership.

OHIO experienced notable scoring increases since its 2015 award, including an overall score increase of nearly 10 percent, within the areas of: academic courses, community service, greenhouse gas emissions, building energy consumption, clean and renewable energy, biodiversity, construction and demolition waste diversion and rainwater management.

STARS also lauded OHIO’s sustainability strengths within numerous subcategories, including: campus engagement, grounds, coordination and planning and diversity and affordability.

Ohio University’s STARS report is publicly available on the STARS website: https://stars.aashe.org/institutions/ohio-university-oh/report/2018-02-20/

“We are very proud of the improvement to our STARS score since our previous submission. We look forward to watching our sustainability efforts further grow in the coming years as we work collectively to achieve a STARS gold rating,” said Steve Wood, associate vice president for Facilities Management and Safety at Ohio University.

Unlike other rating or ranking systems, this program is open to all institutions of higher education, and the criteria that determine a STARS rating are transparent and accessible to anyone. Because STARS is a program based on credits earned, it allows for both internal comparisons as well as comparisons with similar institutions.

“STARS was developed by the campus sustainability community to provide high standards for recognizing campus sustainability efforts,” said AASHE Executive Director Meghan Fay Zahniser. “Ohio University has demonstrated a substantial commitment to sustainability by achieving a STARS Silver Rating and is to be congratulated for their efforts.”