FEBRUARY 20, 2009

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UCO Continues to Lead the Way in Sustainability Efforts With 2008 Environmental Excellence Awards

Photo of OSUIT President, OSUIT faculty member and Korean businessmen.
UCO President Roger Webb led the way as the university kicked off its Bum-a-Bike alternative transportation program in 2008. It’s one part of UCO’s vast sustainability programs which have been nationally recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency and most recently by The Sierra Club and Keep Oklahoma Beautiful.

 

The University of Central Oklahoma has been recognized for excellence in sustainability efforts for 2008, winning both the Earth Care Award from the Sierra Club’s Oklahoma chapter and the Environmental Excellence in Educational Institutions award from Keep Oklahoma Beautiful (KOB).

The Earth Care Award is given to an environmentally conscious business or organization, particularly in one that promotes recycling efforts.

In addition to its recycling efforts, UCO received the honor for its use of wind power energy, conversion to paperless technologies in many areas, transportation, use of waterless urinals throughout campus, beautification efforts that include new campus gardens and education programs.

The Sierra Club also gave special notice to UCO for the $5 million in taxpayer savings that have been identified as a result of the university’s sustainability efforts.

As a part of KOB’s 18th annual Environmental Awards program, UCO received the Environmental Excellence in Educational Institutions award at the KOB Awards Recognition Banquet.

The award recognizes the good works of Oklahoma educational institutions from pre-school to university level for exceptional efforts in the areas of environmental improvement, beautification/landscaping and education promotion.

UCO won the award due to campus wide initiatives that include, projects, programs and campaigns designed to reduce, prevent and control litter; improve water or air quality; campus-wide clean up, planting, landscaping and historical preservation and reservation; and educational promotional campaigns designed to enlighten the public about environmental issues.

The Sierra Club and KOB awards are two of many that UCO has received within the past year recognizing the university’s efforts to become a “Green University.”

Last year, UCO became the first-ever recipient of KOB’s “Vanguard Award,” which is given to the individual, business or organization that embraces cutting edge environmental technologies and concepts in support of a sustainable planet.

One of the largest by a college or university in the nation, utilizing over 26k megawatt-hours of green power annually, UCO’s green power purchase made the university the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s first Green Power Club representative in Oklahoma in May 2006.

UCO’s Biofuel Program was honored with the 2007 National Association of Fleet Administrators award for “Quality Fleet Management Idea,” recognized for the bio-diesel production process that turns UCO’s used cooking oil into an eco-friendly fuel for campus vehicles.

UCO also received the “Best Practices” award by the Southern Association of College and University Business Officers (SACUBO) for its “Green University: Changing Tomorrow, Today” sustainability proposal.

“Green University: Changing Tomorrow, Today” focuses on UCO’s innovation and progress in moving towards becoming a “Green University.”

For more information, contact Bob Ault at (405) 974-5057 in UCO’s Administration and Finance office, or visit www.uco.edu.