What We’re Doing

We at Houghton are actively looking for ways to be more responsible in our stewardship of the earth.  Many of these changes save us money in the long run.  Others may cost a little bit extra but will help us implement more environmentally sustainable practices.  Here is a partial listing of some of the things that we have planned for the 2018 - 2019 year, as well as some of our recent accomplishments.

Current Projects (2018 - 2019)

  • Launched the new Center for Sustainability, with 5 student internship positions
  • Currently retroffiting all light bulbs with LED models, which will reduce energy usage by 750,000 kWh and (after a 10-year payback period) save $90,000 per year
  • Will be installing an electric vehicle charging station (Dec)
  • Working on installing energy monitoring equipment in all buildings
  • Working on creating a "tree map" to show the locations and species of all trees on campus
  • Will complete planting the campus orchard (April), for a total of 68 fruit trees
  • Will begin campuswide composting (April)
  • Will install a campus garden (May)

Recent Accomplishments

  • Published a new trail map for the Houghton trail system
  • Overhauled the campus fleet to replace existing vehicles with fuel-efficient Toyota Priuses, saving the college $3,000 per year in fuel costs
  • Oversaw the completion of a 2.6 megawatt solar system, which provides 35% of the college's electricity needs and saves $80,000 per year.
  • Installed low-flow aerators and showerheads across campus, saving the college $17,000 in 2017-18 and reducing water use by more than 1 million gallons.
  • Recertified by the Arbor Day Foundation under their "Tree Campus USA" program
  • Added creation care signage across campus to bring awareness to the campus community