Ohio University

Search within:

Office of Sustainability


The Office of Sustainability will have variable in-person hours for the indefinite future, but is open virtually during normal business hours.   Please subscribe to our newsletter for monthly updates or email sustainability@ohio.edu with questions.


What is Sustainability

Ohio University defines sustainability as the capacity to simultaneously benefit people, the planet and prosperity now and in the future. Life-cycle analysis, life-cycle costing, social financial proxies, and multi-criteria decision analyses are tools that are used to evaluate sustainability. Also used at Ohio University is a popular but less actionable definition, adapted from the Bruntland definition of sustainable development: sustainability is the ability to meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs.


Ohio University’s Office of Sustainability facilitates the implementation of the Ohio University Sustainability and Climate Action Plan by providing services and support to the campus community and ensures fulfillment of institutional commitments to environmental, social and economic well-being. 

News and Announcements

read all news

  • Office of Sustainability encourages mindfu...

    One might think water is water, but that is not always the case. True water snobs pride themselves on being able to pick out a “Dasani” water from a “Voss.” The Office of Sustainability’s favorite brand of water, however, is the one with the least waste, so they decided to put drinking water to the test.

    From noon to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, representatives from the Office of Sustainability sat beneath Alumni Gateway with two water dispensers, one red and one blue. Each was full of still-cold water, anonymously representing two water types: tap and bottled. Passersby could stop and refresh on the hot day with a dixie cup of each and a task to guess which was bottled. 

    Wednesday’s water challenge was part of a larger concept, 2022’s Pollution Prevention Week. Hosted by the Office of Sustainability, the week of Sept. 19 through 25 hosts a plethora of sustainable events and information, including a Court Street litter pick-up Monday and a pollution prevention information table Tuesday.

  • Campus Recycling and OHIO Athletics to hos...

    Several Ohio University groups have been working together to plan Rufus Recycling Days for the fall semester.

    The Athletics-Sustainability Working Group, Campus Recycling, Office of Sustainability, and administrators and student-athletes from OHIO Athletics (including Regan Berg pictured above) have been meeting to plan these events. 

    Each sport has a designated game during its season that will be a “green game.” To make the games more sustainable, volunteers will act as “bin goalies” to make sure that waste is diverted to the proper collection stream.  As a dedicated “player for the planet” senior soccer player Regan Berg said she is thrilled to be a part of this new initiative.

  • OU’s Ecohouse offers a sustainable living ...

    Surrounded by a luscious organic garden, winding hiking trails and extensive solar panel arrays lies Ohio University’s Ecohouse—a place with deep-rooted history in Athens.  

    Situated between the Dairy Barn and behind The Ridges is the Ecohouse, a sustainable housing option for upperclassmen. Easily accessible by car and close enough for a comfortable walk, the house is located at 8133 Dairy Lane and has more to offer than what meets the eye. 

Upcoming Events

View all events

Wednesday, October 5 Fall Sustainability Series: FOOD FOR CHANGE & CAMP YOSHI 7:00 PM — 8:30 PM Athena Cinema

Monday, October 17 Sustainable Infrastructure Hub Seminar 5:00 PM — 6:00 PM Baker Center Front Room

Wednesday, October 19 Fall Sustainability Series: DISAPPEARING VOICES & HELLBENT 7:00 PM — 7:40 PM Athena Cinema

Sustainability Course Listings

Time to register for courses? Consider taking sustainability courses or courses that include sustainability! The Office of Sustainability tracks these courses for the University.

View featured courses

Office of Sustainability Featured Programs


    Climate & Sustainability Ambassadors

    The Climate and Sustainability Ambassadors program is an initiative of the Sustainable Administration Hub.  The Ambassadors are an energetic and enthusiastic group of students who assist in the implementation of the Ohio University Sustainability and Climate Action Plan.  You can find them leading the Earth Day Sustainability Parade; instructing Bobcats fans on proper disposal of game day waste; teaching in the local middle schools; labeling our storm drains with "drains to river" markers; and more!


    Sustainability Tracking and Evaluation Program (STEP)

    The Sustainability Tracking and Evaluation Program (STEP) is a sustainability certification program which aims to recognize departments or offices across campus for their sustainable efforts, whether they be existing practices or new changes.


    Sustainability Project Laboratory

    Students, do you need an idea for a course project or thesis?  Faculty, are you looking for project ideas for a project-based course?  Our Sustainability Project Laboratory may have the projects you are looking for!  These projects are designed to advance goals in the Ohio University Sustainability & Climate Action Plan while providing experiential and/or community-engaged learning opportunties for students.

Sustainability Hubs

We welcome participants to our Sustainability Hubs! The dates and topics for the Hub Seminar Series can be found on the Calendar of University events.  For more information, please sign up for our newsletter or visit our Hub webpages.  For other sustainability events, please visit the Calendar of University events, and search using the keyword "sustainability". 


Structure of Sustainability Hubs at Ohio University