JSU Gets National Honor for Green Initiatives


The U.S. Department of Education has announced that Jacksonville State University is among the 2018 U.S. Department of Education Green Ribbon Schools Postsecondary Sustainability Awardees.

JSU became eligible for the award in February when the university was named a 2018 Green Ribbon School by the Alabama State Department of Education for its use of environmental education resources and programs to serve and educate the public.

JSU’s first official commitment to environmental and sustainability education began in 1995 with the creation of the Environmental Policy and Information Center. Biologist Pete Conroy, EPIC director, has since led efforts to create a National Wildlife Refuge, two National Parks and a National Wilderness.

The Little River Canyon Center, opened in 2009, was one of the state’s first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED)-certified public buildings. Visitors learn about geothermal heating and cooling; sustainable technical practices; recycled materials; and a rooftop water silo that collects 2,500 gallons of rainwater to irrigate areas around the property.

Those efforts are what made JSU one of 46 schools, six districts and six postsecondary institutions across the country to be honored for innovative efforts to reduce environmental impact and utility costs, improve health and wellness, and ensure effective sustainability education.