In compliance with Goal Six of Gettysburg College’s Strategic Directions, which pushes the institution towards greater lengths of sustainability, the College works to make purchases with sustainability in mind. These purchases are made from several different departments within the College, demonstrating the true dedication of the campus to institutional sustainable purchasing practices.
50% of Housekeeping Services cleaning supplies are eco-friendly. The IT Department researches all computers before purchasing any of them. Computer monitors and towers with reduced heavy metal content are chosen above others.
Furthermore, Gettysburg College as a whole has made purchases to decrease the campus’ carbon footprint. In 2002, Gettysburg joined 24 other Pennsylvania colleges and universities in deciding to purchase wind-derived energy. Additionally, in 2008, the College contracted to obtain 20% of its energy from biomass sources. With these purchases, Gettysburg College’s reliance on fossil fuels has declined from 61% in 1996 to 53% in 2006.
In 2012, the College was able to host solar panels atop the Jaeger Athletic Center and Bream Wright Hauser Athletic Complex. With the help of RGS Energy, Hudson Energy, has agreed to officially own, install, and maintain the solar panels, while the College hosts the actual project. Hudson energy then sells the solar-generated electricity back to Gettysburg College at a reduced rate.
The Jaeger Athletic Center also uses the sun to reduce its energy intake. The tall glass tower acts as a thermal chimney, which uses passive solar energy and convection to circulate air throughout the building, improving ventilation without using any electricity.