April 19, 2019

Wayne State celebrates Earth Day

Learn about the positive contributions Wayne State University is making toward protecting the environment — and how you can help — when you celebrate Earth Day with the Office of Campus Sustainability and the Warrior Student Sustainability Coalition, starting at 2 p.m. on April 22 on Gullen Mall.

Have a snack while you find out more about the Sustainability Plan, which aims to reduce Wayne State’s greenhouse gas emissions by 25% from a 2014 baseline by 2022. To date, the university has reduced its total emissions by 19% — an encouraging milestone toward making the 2022 goal.

“This speaks volumes about the institutional commitment toward reducing its carbon footprint,” said Daryl Pierson, chief sustainability officer with the Office of Campus Sustainability. “WSU has made significant strides in capturing data so that we can measure our environmental impact.”

In the last several years, Wayne State has completed a lighting retrofit project that converted older T12 florescent lighting to LED lighting, completed numerous energy conservation measures in the physical plant and implemented various waste-reduction initiatives. The WSU Greenhouse Gas Inventory measures Scope 1, Scope 2 and Scope 3 emissions to gather comprehensive data regarding the university’s carbon footprint.

  • Scope 1 emissions are from university power sources, its vehicle fleet, refrigerants and fertilizers.
  • Scope 2 emissions are from purchased electricity and purchased steam.
  • Scope 3 emissions are from student, staff and faculty commutes, university-financed travel, study abroad travel, solid waste and wastewater, as well as loses in electrical transmission and distribution.

“Wayne State’s largest improvements happened in Scope 2, which means that a lot of operational improvements are making a difference,” Pierson said.

Looking for a way to make a difference this Earth Day — and beyond? Pierson and his office have a few simple ideas for Earth Day resolutions:

  • Carpool to work or meetings.
  • Walk or ride your bike instead of driving.
  • Use the water filling stations on campus.
  • Utilize the single stream recycling program.
  • Visit the Wayne State Farmers Market for access to locally grown produce.

To showcase the ways you’re being sustainable on campus, tag @sustainability_wsu on Instagram and use the hashtag #sustainablewsu. Learn more by visiting livinggreen.wayne.edu.