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Who We Are
The Vanderbilt University Sustainability and Environmental Management Office (SEMO) is a joint effort between Plant Operations and Vanderbilt Environmental Health and Safety. SEMO’s mission is to initiate, promote, coordinate, evaluate and encourage environmental management and sustainability initiatives that improve Vanderbilt’s impact on the community and environment.
- Campus Planning and Construction won the 2009 Governor’s Environmental Stewardship Award in the Green Building category.
- 32 Eco-Dores volunteered to serve as undergraduate peer educators for residential students on campus during the pilot phase of the Eco-Dores program.
- Over 100 members of the Vanderbilt community were involved in the development of Vanderbilt’s Environmental Commitment Statement, released April 22, 2009. Six groups representing over 300 VU faculty, staff and students endorsed the statement.
- 11 Vanderbilt facilities are LEED certified.
- 2,100 gallons of used cooking oil was converted to 1,970 gallons of biodiesel saving Plant Operations and WilSkills over $5,500 in fuel costs.
- 5,400 tons of coal ash are reused/recycled by a Chattanooga concrete manufacturing facility saving $160,000 in disposal costs annually.
- 2,848,000 lbs (1,424 tons) of paper, confidential paper, cardboard, plastic and aluminum were recycled from VU and VUMC together resulting in $78,371 in recycling rebates and almost $40,000 in avoided landfill fees.
- 151,659 lbs (75.8 tons) of computers were recycled by VU.
- 51,000 fluorescent light bulbs and 33,000 lbs (16.5 tons) of batteries were recycled.
- Recycling was implemented at 15 major campus events and 65 athletic events.
- ~60 million gallons of water and $250,000 are being saved each year by 1,500 water-conserving fixtures that have been retrofitted by Plant Operations and Plant services and by utilizing non-potable groundwater from Vanderbilt’s underground utility tunnels in the on-campus Cogeneration Power Plant cooling towers and for watering the athletic fields near the Student Recreation Center.
- $101,000 was saved in 2009 on utility costs in Buttrick Hall, Jacobs/Featheringill Hall, and Studio Arts Center by Plant Operations implementation of night and weekend temperature setback controls.
- $30,000 annually in stormwater fees was saved by applying for and receiving Metro Water Services’ new educational credit.