Sustainability Summit at WSU Focuses on Business, Energy, Savings

OGDEN, Utah – By implementing a long-term sustainability strategy, Weber State University saved $1,646,138 on its 2015 energy bill. The university also reduced its carbon footprint by more than 23 percent from the baseline year of 2007, while adding 354,652 square feet of building space.

Discussions of energy and cost savings available through sustainable business practices will highlight the seventh annual Intermountain Sustainability Summit hosted by WSU and the Utah Recycling Alliance, March 24 and 25 in the Shepherd Union Building. The conference attracts approximately 350 participants each year.

Joel Makower, chairman and executive editor of GreenBiz.com, will present the keynote address, March 24 at 8:30 a.m. For the past 25 years, Makower has been a leading voice in environmental business practices, touting financial savings available through thoughtful sustainability. In 2014, he was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the International Institute of Sustainability Professionals.

Eric Lombardi, executive director of Eco-Cycle International, will highlight the afternoon with a general session at 2:30 p.m. Lombardi educates and advocates internationally for creating “Zero Waste – or darn near” communities. Eco-Cycle focuses on design of recycling facilities, collection and marketing of “hard to recycle” materials, benefits of a social-enterprise approach, politics of community recycling programs and strategies for long-term recycling business survival.

Lombardi also will lead a daylong workshop, March 25, about Zero Waste communities.

The two-day summit will include more than 30 speakers hosting sessions about clean energy, climate, water and waste reduction, as well as Utah’s sustainability policies, including a session with state lawmakers. Government, business and non-profit groups will sponsor vendor and information booths.  

“The summit is a wonderful opportunity for private citizens, educators, students, business and government representatives to come together to learn about a variety of issues, practices and new developments in sustainability,” said associate geography professor Alice Mulder, director of WSU’s Sustainability Practices and Research Center. “Those who attend will come away motived with a new network of peers, the latest sustainability practices and the knowledge of how to implement them in their personal and business lives.”

For more information on the Intermountain Sustainability Summit and for a complete schedule of events, visit intermountainsustainabilitysummit.com.

Visit weber.edu/wsutoday for more news about Weber State University.

For high resolution images, please visit the following links:

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Contact:

Alice Mulder, director of WSU’s Sustainability Practices and Research Center
801-626-6198 • amulder@weber.edu

Author:

Allison Barlow Hess, Director of Public Relations
801-626-7948 • ahess@weber.edu