“The human race is challenged more than ever before to demonstrate our mastery, not over nature but of ourselves.” —Rachel Carson
The Boston College campus comprises some 338 acres of land and over 7 million square feet of space. Given the size of our campus, there are great challenges and opportunities for BC to become more sustainable and plan for long term change.
Boston College is committed to designing and constructing sustainable buildings that are energy efficient, conserve water, provide a high level of occupant comfort and safety and have longevity.
To meet this standard, BC is committed to design and construct all new campus buildings to a minimum LEED Silver rating with the goal of a higher rating when feasible. Boston College has 5 LEED buildings and one building completed with anticipation of being awarded LEED silver certification. Existing LEED buildings:
- LEED Silver Blessed Peter Faber Jesuit Community on the Brighton Campus
- LEED NC Silver St Thomas Moore Apartments, and is the first dorm to have a greywater filtration and recycling system.
- LEED NC Silver Stokes Hall
Currently, BC is replacing CFLs and flourescent light fixtures with LED (light emitting diodes) fixtures. Over the years, BC has converted lighting in our buildings to ensure energy efficiency and quality. Additionally, many classrooms and common areas are now equipped with motion sensor lighting.
- Low-flow toilets and shower heads, as well as faucet aerators, have been installed in a number of the dorms and will be used in new student living areas being created through renovation and expansion projects in many of the residence halls.
- Boston College uses underground sprinkler systems across campus. The school is now using native plants in new landscape and planting plans.
- Dining Services continually researches energy and water-efficient technologies when replacing food service equipment and purchases Energy Star or equivalently-rated replacement equipment. Learn more about Boston College Dining Services's Sustainability efforts.
- Every BC student is given a reusable water bottle to cut down on the use of plastic water bottles.
Boston College has implemented recycling in all dorm rooms, dorm buildings, dining halls, and outdoor spaces. Wherever there is a trash can, it is paired with a recycling bin. BC is single stream, meaning students do not have to sort their recyclables. Additionally, composting is done in Lower, Mac, and Hillside. For more information on recycling, visit our recycling page.
- University Garden The student environmental groups EcoPledgeand Real Food BC started an organic garden across from McElroy Dining Hall. The plot grows everything from tomatoes, peppers, carrots, zucchini, and broccoli to basil and chives. The garden provides recreational and educational activities for BC students and faculty, as well as for the local community. It is a place for people to gather and work on a fun project together outside in the sun.
- Boston College is planning to implement the practices and ideology of xeriscaping into its ground efforts in the form of natural landscaping. This type of landscaping is designed in such a way that the need for water is brought to a bare minimum. For more information on grounds efforts at BC, visit our Grounds Maintenance web site.
Boston College Dining Services administration places a high priority on sustainability and has made great strides to integrate sustainable efforts of local vendors, manufacturers, and products into the department and university systems.
Facilities Management works on the planning, design, construction, and maintenance of Boston College’s buildings and property, and has comitted to operate in a sustainable and environmentally sensitive manner.
They have developed Sustainable Operations Guidelines to ensure that Boston College is using the best practices in sustainable management of campus affairs. These guidelines describe their aspirations in this regard, the procedures in place to help achieve them, and the metrics used to track performance.
Members of the Boston College community can easily and efficiently commute to or from campus or travel the city by using:
- BC shuttle bus
- The T (B line, C line or D line)
- The MBTA Bus (Bus stops located along Comm Ave and Beacon St)
- Mavin Rideshare (Parking spots located on and around campus - Newton, Beacon and Comm Ave garages)
- BC Bike rental program
- Bike racks located indoors at Keyes Hall, St. Thomas Moore apartments and Reservoir apartments.
- You can also bike around the city using the public bikes available at a variety of stations across the city. Rent them for the day ($8), month, or year!
- ChargePoint Car Charging Station (Located in Comm ave parking garage, 2nd floor on back wall)
Incorporating just one of these travel options into your commuting routine a few times a week greatly reduces your impact on the environment.
Out with the Old
As part of the Boston College Computer Replacement program, workstations for faculty and staff are refreshed every four years. The process replaces outdated workstations with current configurations. The old computers are sent back to Dell, which reuses and recycles the material. Visit the BCCR web site to learn more.
For more information visit BC ITS at bc.edu/green-tech
The Boston College Energy & Environment Alumni Network (BCEEAN), now almost 700 members strong, formed in 2009 to:
. Provide networking and career opportunities for alumni interested in energy and environment;
. Help alumni keep informed about developments in this rapidly expanding field by connecting alumni to cutting-edge research and to the insights and experiences of other alumni;
. Serve as a resource for BC students, faculty, administrators, and alumni; and
. Enhance Boston College's contribution to creating a sustainable economy.
more information is available on our website, www.bc.edu/bceean.
Energy Star Buildings
Additionally, BC has four existing buildings that have Energy Star ratings - Medeiros Hall, Stayer Hall, 129 Lake Street, and The Cadigan Alumni Center. These standards of energy efficiency are also being sought for additional buildings on campus.