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September 2, 2004

Community Watch: Stanford receives Green Business certification

Representatives from Santa Clara County's Green Business program will be on campus today to present Stanford with a certificate that recognizes the university for its many efforts to conserve resources and reduce waste and pollution. The university, which received the honor on Aug. 18, joins approximately 325 environmentally conscious businesses throughout the Bay Area.

Stanford will be officially recognized by the county Board of Supervisors sometime this fall (the exact date has yet to be announced), and a link to the university has been included in a directory on the regional Green Business website,

Criteria for becoming a Green Business fall into four main areas: water conservation, energy conservation, pollution prevention, and solid waste reduction and recycling. Standards are met through resource and waste assessments, and by installing more efficient equipment where possible.

At Stanford, approximately 80 percent of the irrigation system is controlled by a centralized system linked to a local weather station to seasonally adjust water needs based in part on evaporation rates. And in the last decade, the university's Energy Retrofit Program has funded more than $7 million in upgrades that have reduced electricity usage by more than 20 million kilowatts.

In addition to the land and buildings division, other departments that contributed toward certification are Environmental Health and Safety and Residential and Dining Enterprises -- as well as Peninsula Sanitary Services Inc.

Stanford is one of the largest green businesses on the list, which also includes public agencies. The Bay Area's green businesses span more than 20 industries and range from auto repair shops to hotels and home-based businesses.

"Stanford is extremely pleased to receive Santa Clara County's certification as a Green Business," said Robert Reidy, vice provost for land and buildings. "This award recognizes the university's commitment to being an environmentally responsible member of the community's effort to conserve energy, water and other resources while preventing pollution and waste.

"Stanford is committed to the sound stewardship of its lands and looks forward to expanding its knowledge in both sustainable principles and practices," Reidy said. "As community members, we can all contribute and benefit."



Michael Peña, News Service (650) 725-4275,

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