Greening BGSU

Energy Upgrade of Hayes Hall.   BGSU will receive $911,658 to upgrade the heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems in Hayes Hall. Energy-efficient lighting will also be installed, along with a computer-based building management to control lights and temperature.  The grant also will be used to help students learn about energy conservation techniques, integrating classroom and real-world experiences.  

When You Move Out, Don’t Throw It Out (WYMO).  Students leaving the residence halls at the end of fall and spring semesters have the opportunity to give new life to the clothes, electronics, and furniture that they want to leave behind.  By collecting these items and making them available to charities and benevolent organizations, the solid waste stream is meaningful reduced while serving many needs throughout the community.

Green Tailgating.  BGSU’s football fans love to tailgate.  Part of the fun is the food and drink, meaning tremendous numbers of bottles, cans, papers and other materials are brought to campus.  Our student volunteers provide tailgaters an easy way to recycle, and teach them about its importance.  At the end of game, the tailgaters leave behind almost nothing but materials prepared for a new life in a recycling bin.  

Green Dining is More than Eating Your Vegetables.  The Sundial dining hall successfully piloted a program encouraging sustainable practices.  For example, reusable dishes and flatware replaced the standard plastic or paper plates, cups and utensils typically used by most students.  Water bottles were awarded to those students selecting sustainable practices, further encouraging reuse over waste generation. 

The Dream Green Team.  Each of BGSU’s residents halls has an advisor that meets weekly to discuss ways to bring about a greener community.  Advisors serve as personal role models in addition to implementing programs to reduce energy consumption and promote source reduction, material reuse, and recycling. 

Student Green Fund.    Students can implement their ideas for greening the campus with the assistance of the BGSU Green Fund.  Any student or student organization may propose an activity that benefits the campus, either directly or through education.  Projects can be large or small – awards are made based on the potential to help the campus make progress toward becoming a sustainable community. 

Native Prairie Gardens.  The Center for Environmental Programs maintains two gardens to show native plants endemic to this region.  On the north side of Shatzel Hall is a small demonstration garden, complete with a number of native species with their names shown on accompanying signs.  The larger 10-acre native prairie on Poe Road (just west of the driving range) has a butterfly garden, acres of mixed prairie grasses, and a woodlot.  These gardens are great for educational purposes, and fun just to visit.   

Friday Night Lights. This simple idea has big saving.  Students start their weekend by walking the campus, turning out lights from classrooms and other buildings that will not be used through the weekend.   Savings are large and the work fun, as students work in groups doing their part to green the campus. 

Orange Bikes are Green.   New life has been given to old bicycles as they are brought to campus, renovated, and made available to students.  After registering in the program, students can take any yellow bike parked on campus, and leave them anywhere on campus.  The bicycle fleet is maintained by student volunteers, who learn the basics of bike mechanics.  Volunteers are welcome!

Student Environmental Clubs.  The Environmental Action Group (EAG), the Environmental Service Club (ESC), and the Environmental Health Student Group (EHSG) each provide opportunities for students to get involved changing their community.  Each group sponsors a variety of activities, often working together.  Join one, two or all – each makes a contribution. 

Sun and Ice: Solar Panels Energize Arena .  BGSU’s ice arena may be unique in much of its ice being produced directly from the sun.  Photovoltaic panels on its roof, owned and operated by the city of Bowling Green, produce up to 31 kilowatts of energy.  Ice production is an environmentally expensive process because of its large energy needs – using the sun is an important reduction to the campus’s carbon footprint.