Centre Environmental Association (CEA) is a student-led organization committed to promoting, developing, and maintaining environmental sustainability in the Centre community through education, activism, and institutional change.

Sustainability At Centre

Centre College is committed to sustainable, environmentally friendly practices and energy conservation.


Acknowledging Centre College’s Statement of Purpose “to prepare students for lives of learning, leadership, and service,” the College is committed to environmental sustainability.

We recognize the fragility of our planet and therefore our responsibility to account for the wasteful consumption and effects of human behavior that compromise the environment for all living things, and negatively affect the economy, health, and overall quality of human life. We seek climate neutrality through appropriate behavior and decisions and are determined to actively fulfill our responsibility as a signee of the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment. The College shall seek new ways to capitalize on the intelligence, wisdom and creativity within our community, and where necessary, seek outside help and resources. To accomplish these goals, the College will continue to prepare our faculty, staff, and students to be global citizens, promoting responsibility and awareness through education and practice at Centre and beyond.


From student organizations to the President’s Climate Commitment Advisory Committee (PCCAC), members of the Centre community are united in their desire to reduce their environmental footprint.

Allows students and faculty to purchase carbon offsets, contributing money toward carbon-reducing initiatives that counterbalance emissions that cannot be reduced or avoided (such as those generated via plane rides to study-abroad locations). Students studying abroad are asked to contribute varying amounts based on the air miles they travel. 

  • All cooling systems on campus have been replaced by low-energy systems
  • 75% of windows on campus are dual pane, increasing annually, reducing heating and cooling waste
  • All chillers use CFC-free refrigerants and fountains are winterized with biodegradable antifreeze
  • Expanded use of electric cars and golf carts

Centre currently uses Circon, a state-of-the-art energy management system, in 90% of all campus facilities to allow technicians to read and control the temperature in any building, as well as set schedules that reduce energy use.

In 2007, in a student-initiated ballot, 82% of the student population voted for the adoption of a Green Fund, which requires each Centre student to pay a $20 surcharge on tuition that goes toward purchasing renewable energy credits from the local Mother Ann Lee Hydroelectric Station. Centre was the first educational institution in Kentucky to support the local production of green energy.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is a rating system devised by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) to evaluate the environmental performance of a building and encourage market transformation towards sustainable design. Centre is the only college in Kentucky to have four LEED-certified buildings including two at the Gold level.


All light fixtures that are replaced are replaced with LED fixtures. Many additions and renovations incorporate both motion occupancy sensors and LED lighting. LED lighting use only 14 watts to produce the same lumens as a 150-watt bulb and last up to 20 years.

The local Mother Ann Lee Hydroelectric Station is a 2,040 kwh run-of-river hydropower plant located at Lock and Dam 7 on the Kentucky River in Shakertown, Ky., just a few miles from Centre’s campus. The project is one of only a few dozen hydropower plants nationally to have received “Low Impact” certification from the Low Impact Hydro Institute. Centre buys 370 blocks of renewable energy credits (RECs) per month, offsets that represent approximately 30 percent of the College’s anticipated use. Visit the Hydroelectric Station’s website for more information about its origins and current initiatives.

The College's Recycling Coordinator organizes campus recycling pick-up and promotional activities. Recycling is available for aluminum, cardboard, paper, steel cans, glass, and 1 and 2 bottleneck plastic.

A student led, sixty-panel photovoltaic array has a total rated capacity of 19.8 kW producing 24,000 kWh per year.

  • Repeated use takeout containers
  • Water bottle filling stations
  • Low-flow toilets used when replacements are needed
  • Mineral spirits, used to clean paintbrushes, reused through a basic filtering process

Check out Tree Plotter and explore the extensive detail and variety of trees on Centre's campus.

Visit Tree Plotter


American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC)

The institution is committed to reporting its carbon emissions levels annually and to achieving zero emissions by the year 2040. An ad hoc advisory committee is appointed each year by President Moreland to advance the College’s pursuit of climate neutrality, coordinate Centre’s participation in the ACUPCC and advise the President on matters relating to sustainability and environmental concerns. All meetings are always open to visitors.


The Centre Environmental Association (CEA) is a student-led organization committed to promoting, developing, and maintaining environmental sustainability in the Centre community through education, activism, and institutional change. All are welcome.