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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 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

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  • Talking Points With Taylor: Five reasons t...

    One of the biggest factors I considered when looking for a college was its commitment to sustainability. As our environment continues to change, it is important to support institutions that recognize the need for anthropogenic change. Colleges and universities are responsible for housing, feeding, and the upkeep of facilities/land; they provide the necessities for students residing on campus. Because students rely on the university for their basic necessities, they can’t maintain as many personal sustainability practices. But luckily, they don’t need to worry because OU continues to implement eco-friendly choices. Here are five of my favorite ways OU tackles sustainable living:

  • Earth Day commemorates 'people, planet and...

    Earth Day at Ohio University has become increasingly more important and is celebrated yearly. Even with the holiday falling on Palmer Fest, people still found a way to spread awareness for dear old Mother Earth. With climate change and sustainability becoming a more significant conversation topic each year, this was how students cared for trees of green and red roses, too.

    Sam Crowl, associate director of sustainability at OU, is assisting OU’s Office of Sustainability in the Ohio Earth Day Celebrations held in the Walter Rotunda this Thursday, April 27, from noon to 4 p.m. During this event, there will be presentations, Earth Day-themed poetry and an Earth Day proclamation from the mayor of Athens.

  • The efforts behind a greener Ohio Universi...

    Every day, students, faculty and staff work to make Ohio University a more climate-friendly place to live and learn. 

    From the Office of Sustainability facilitating the OHIO Sustainability and Climate Action Plan to the many colleges leading innovative research efforts, Ohio University is home to an abundance of programs that seek to benefit people and the planet.

    Read on to learn more about Ohio University’s sustainability efforts. 

Upcoming Events

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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.

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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