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.

  • Air Travel Mitigation Fund

    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. More Information.

  • Green Fund

    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.

  • Energy Efficiency

    • All cooling systems on campus have been replaced by low-energy systems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
    • Students have the option to buy high-efficiency dorm refrigerator
  • LEED Certified Buildings

    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.

  • Lighting

    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.

  • Mother Ann Lee

    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.

  • Recycling

    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.

  • Solar Energy

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

  • Waste Reduction

    • 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
  • Energy Management

    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.

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 Roush 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.

  • Tangible Goals

    1. Emphasize the need for energy conservation in all new construction: All new buildings and major renovations will be designed and built using LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) silver standards or equivalent. Certification through the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) will be pursued as appropriate.

    2. Adopt an E.P.A. Energy Star© purchasing policy: Energy consumption and life cycle costs will be considered in purchases of all equipment and appliances. The intention will be to purchase E.P.A. Energy Star© products in all areas for which such ratings exist.

    3. Promote waste minimization throughout campus: Support activities such as a vigorous recycling collection program in all major buildings; the College’s participation in the RecycleMania competition; encourage the use of re-useable drink containers.

    4. Pursue sustainable energy sources: Continue the search for and support of purchasing electricity from sustainable sources, including the Mother Ann Lee Hydroelectric Station on the Kentucky River.

  • Green House Gas (GHG) Inventory

    This inventory, in the format required by the ACUPCC, is publicly available online here.
    Each year we update and add current year data. The full cumulative report is available here. GHG Emissions Report 2008 to 2015
    Ultimate goal: Climate neutrality by 2040

    2020: Reduction of GHG emissions by 25% from 2007-08 levels
    2030: Reduction of GHG emissions by 50% from 2007-08 levels
    2040: Climate neutrality

Committee Members for 2018-19

Andrew Crown-Weber (community), Michelle DeWitt (admissions), Mark Galatowitsch (biology), Aaron Godlaski (psychology), Elizabeth Graves (development), Anne Lubbers (biology), Scot Messer (facilities), Rose-Marie Roessler (biology), Russ Strunk (I.T.), Cindy Long (communications), Megs Gendreau (philosophy), Brett Werner (enviro studies), Preston Miles (chemistry).

Liza Goss (CEA), Allie Riley (CEA), Kevin Wagner (SGA), Peyton Cuzzart (SGA, fall), Race Pellant (SGA, spring), Michael Rammage (KSEC).


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.