SXU holds Greenhouse Gas Audit
Audit to measure and decrease carbon footprint
Chicago (Nov. 11, 2008) Saint Xavier University will conduct a greenhouse gas audit to evaluate the university’s carbon footprint as part of its obligation to the American Colleges and Universities Presidents Climate Commitment. Saint Xavier University was the first Chicago area University to sign the Climate Commitment, which calls for its nearly 600 members to pursue climate neutrality.
SXU intends to analyze and decrease its greenhouse gas emissions on campus by working with the Clean Air- Cool Planet program and expects to complete the audit by January, 2009. Typically, the three leading contributions to greenhouse gases include the heating and cooling of buildings, transportation and electricity.
The first step is data collection, such as studying student and faculty demographics, determining how many vehicles are used on campus and how far they travel, and examining how much nitrogen is in landscaping fertilizers.
The next step is formulating a reduction plan based on the data to help neutralize SXU’s carbon emissions. SXU will develop its future campus by constructing new buildings while still reducing its carbon emissions.
SXU already has taken several strides to curb harmful greenhouse emissions by building two environmentally friendly residence halls on campus: Arthur Rubloff Hall, which recently became the first LEED Gold certified university building in the state, and Agatha O’Brien Hall, which opened this fall.
The university’s new GreenBike bike sharing program, the first of its kind in the country, also will contribute to the overall outcome of carbon neutrality on campus but reducing the use of fuel burning vehicles. Rhubarb’s, a new dining facility on the first floor of McCarthy Hall, offers organic foods that are supplied by local vendors, which means less fuel is used to transport the food.
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