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Report Card 2011

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West Virginia University
College Sustainability Report Card 2011

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West Virginia University

School details:

  Grade lower than last year


Endowment: $406 million as of March 31, 2010

Location: Morgantown, West Virginia


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: Yes (see response)


Please note: Data was collected in summer 2010 and may no longer be current.


Data compiled from survey responses, when available, and from independent research, when needed. For more information on data collection and evaluation, please see the  Methodology section.

Overall grade  
B -
West Virginia University's sustainability office employs a full-time director, and 14 faculty and staff members devote a portion of their time to sustainability efforts. Several committees focus on campus environmental efforts, including the sustainability committee, which promoted sustainability as a key pillar in the university's strategic plan. A campus sustainability policy has been completed and is pending approval from the board of governors.
WVU has entered into the third phase of a performance-based energy reduction program that includes the installation of LED and other high-efficiency lighting as well as laboratory hood ventilation controls. Community members are encouraged to conserve energy through the campus outreach and environmental education program, WE CAN.
Dining services spends 4 percent of its food budget on local or organic products and purchases fair trade coffee and tea. The university purchases exclusively hormone- and antibiotic-free milk, as well as some sustainably harvested seafood. To reduce waste, WE CAN committee members help facilitate recycling during student move-in, and proceeds from an end-of-year furniture sale go to the United Way. Electronic waste is recycled under a no landfill policy.
A LEED building policy, pending approval of the University Planning Committee, will require all projects over $5 million to achieve LEED certification or an equivalent rating. Two major renovations have met LEED-EB standards, and a green roof has been installed on campus. Sub-surface stormwater treatment systems have been installed under campus parking lots.
WVU Biodiesel is raising funds to build a student-run, on-campus processing station. The Sierra Student Coalition works to build a more sustainable campus and awareness about mountaintop removal mining. Facilities management hosts the Ecolympics competition, during which two recent buildings reduced their energy use by 25 percent. The university employs three interns to work on campus initiatives, and sustainability presentations are a component of new student orientation.
The entire campus community is given free access to the university-operated electric Personal Rapid Transit system as well as free passes for local transportation. In fall 2009, the university opened a transportation center with bicycle storage, showers, a commuter lounge, bus terminals for campus and public transit, and a parking garage. WVU hosts an online ride-matching service, a car-sharing program, and a bike-sharing and repair service.
The WVU Foundation makes a list of all holdings available only to trustees and does not make its shareholder voting record public.
The foundation aims to optimize investment returns, and the endowment is currently invested in renewable energy funds. The foundation uses investment managers who consider environmental and sustainability factors.
The foundation asks that its investment managers handle the details of proxy voting.
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