Virginia Tech funds 12 sustainability projects through the student Green RFP Program
The funds will be directed toward advancing sustainability on campus by improving energy efficiency, enhancing sustainable dining, providing additional water bottle refill stations, upgrading stream conservation, enhancing recycling and reuse programs, and increasing our canopy.
The specific projects include:
- LED interior lights in President’s Quad residence halls.
- LED interior lights in Pritchard Hall study lounges.
- OZZI Machine Reusable Container expansion.
- LED exterior lights in President’s Quad and between Cochrane and Cheatham halls.
- Water bottle refill stations – Cowgill and Burchard halls.
- Stroubles Creek Riparian Restoration.
- Water bottle refill stations – Latham Hall.
- Water bottle refill stations – Derring Hall.
- Ytoss residence hall indoor collection containers.
- Native trees for upcoming planting events.
- Pollinator habitats at the Hahn Horticulture Garden.
- Stadium Woods upgrades.
Every year, the office seeks proposals from students and student groups for sustainability projects that support Virginia Tech’s Climate Action Commitment. The projects should focus on energy efficiency and energy conservation.
This year, 15 student organizations submitted a record number of 48 proposals to the Office of Sustainability. Seventeen were selected for further review and prioritization by the university governance system’s Energy and Sustainability Committee. The proposals were then presented to the Office of Budget and Financial Planning for approval and funding consideration.
The 12 chosen proposals represent the most approved in one year and the second highest dollar value funded in the program’s eight-year history.
“This initiative gives students the opportunity to articulate what is truly important to them regarding sustainability on campus and allows them to leave a lasting, tangible legacy on campus,” said Denny Cochrane, Virginia Tech sustainability program manager. “Without question, the Green RFP Program promotes student engagement and is extremely popular.”
Since 2010, the program has provided more than $654,000 for 65 sustainability projects, which has helped the university achieve the goals outlined in the Virginia Tech Climate Action Commitment and Sustainability Plan. The plan, which was reaffirmed in 2013, commits the university to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving energy efficiency and recycling, and pursuing LEED Silver certification or better for new campus buildings and major renovations.