William Paterson University was one of 13 individuals and organizations recognized for its sustainability efforts during the 2023 Environmental Leadership Awards ceremony held by the Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey (CIANJ), in connection with Commerce Magazine, on April 21.

The annual awards celebrate the achievement, stewardship, and leadership of CIANJ members who see to make the world a more sustainable place by protecting the environment and natural resources. The University was honored for its work to reduce energy usage on campus. Honorees were selected by a panel of independent judges who reviewed entries from companies in New Jersey that have made environmental accomplishments over the last year.

William Paterson’s long record of commitment to environmental leadership and sustainability continues to yield significant and expanding results, with campus initiatives focused on conservation, efficiency, and education. The University’s 3.3 MW solar panel installation, among the largest at a four-year U.S. institution, supplies 12 percent of campus energy needs. Over the past two decades, while increasing the size of the campus by 47 percent, the University has lowered consumption of electricity by 30 percent, natural gas by 50 percent, and carbon emissions by 1350 tons.

Strategies for reducing energy usage include food waste composting, energy-efficient lighting and HVAC systems, recycling initiatives, resource conservation, and electric charging stations, among others. Building projects have earned a U.S. Green Building Council LEED Gold Award, three Green Building Design Awards, EPA recognition for carbon reduction, and the 2020 Approaching Zero Sustainability Award.

WP is a signatory of the national Climate Leadership Network-Carbon Commitment and a member of the Second Nature higher education climate initiative. Campus efforts are guided by a Sustainability Committee, endorsed by President Richard Helldobler and comprised of faculty, staff, administrators, and students.

Source: William Paterson University