Duke is taking the gold for being green.
The university received the 2013 Sustainability Award in Facilities Management from APPA, an educational facilities trade organization. The award is for Duke's commitment to integrate sustainable policies and practices throughout the institution's mission, a key part of Duke's goal of becoming climate neutral by 2024.
It's all a part of weaving ideas of sustainability into Duke's institutional fabric, said Tavey Capps, Duke's director of sustainability.
"From the start, we've used resources and engaged stakeholders from across the university to plan and guide our Climate Action Plan," Capps said. "Because of that, people across Duke have felt ownership and accountability for all the sustainability goals we have."
Capps noted that when applying for the award, Duke made sure to highlight innovative and sustainable facilities projects, like the new reclamation pond, Duke's Carbon Offsets Initiative and water management efforts. Duke also boasts 4.9 million square feet of space certified as part of the Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program, among the highest of any American college and university.
Duke will be recognized during APPA's annual conference in August and receive a plaque commemorating the award.
"In Duke Facilities we view sustainability as a verb," said John Noonan, vice president for Facilities. "It's something we strive to include as part of our planning and daily activities across campus. Duke's leadership in sustainability at all levels within Facilities Management allows the institution to reduce its environmental footprint while creating a culture of conservation and responsibility among the campus community."
Last year's winners of the inaugural APPA Sustainability Award included American University, Emory University, University of British Columbia. University of California-Irvine and University of Prince Edward Island.
For more information about the APPA Sustainability Award, visit the organization's website.