Campus Consortium for Environmental Excellence

Sector Activity Update

EPA Colleges and Universities Sector Strategies

February 19, 2004


The U.S. EPA Colleges and Universities Sector is a partnership designed to develop innovative programs and best management practices for promoting environmental stewardship and achieving performance objectives, and develop strategies to reduce regulatory barriers to environment performance in academia. For general background information see

The purpose of this Sector Activity Update is to advise interested parties of the Sector activities in the last few months particularly the direction of the three Working Groups.

Coordinating Committee
Six organizations have partnered with the US EPA in the Colleges and Universities Sector program. Each partner has designated a sector contact. The sector contacts along with the EPA point-of-contact currently act as the Coordinating Committee The current Coordinating Committee members are:

Bruce Backus (Chair) Howard Hughes Medical Institute
Shai Morris US Environmental Protection Agency
Shelly Steinbach American Council on Education
Anne Gross Association of Higher Education Business Officers
Peter Schneider Campus Consortium for Environmental Excellence
Cheri Hildreth Campus Safety Health and Env. Management Association
Lander Medlin National Association of College and University Business Officers

Work Groups
On November 19th the Coordinating Committee met in Washington D.C. and formed three Work Groups to tailor efforts on the priority areas of the Sectors program. The Work Groups were formed to represent the diverse nature of the Sector, with participants from nonprofits, EPA regions, and colleges and universities of all sizes, public and private orientation, and with widespread geographic representation. Attached please find a complete roster of the members of the three Work Groups. Since December, all three Work Groups have been holding regular conference calls.

Performance Measurement Work Group
Harold Glasser, Western Michigan University (Chair)

This Work Group has decided to imitate a pilot study. Each of the member schools will work on measuring six specific indicators namely solid waste, hazardous waste, water, energy and greenhouse gases. The 14 schools will attempt to assemble measurement information over the last ten years to better identify problems and approaches. These same indictors are presented in the new Performance Measurement poster available at;

For more information on this Group contact Harold at

EMS Work Group
Harvest Collier, University of Missouri Rolla (Chair)

The Environmental Management Systems (EMS) Work Group has begun by preparing two documents: 1) A one-page description of “What is an EMS?” in order to synchronize our various perspectives and have a simple educational tool. 2) A non-regulatory , soft letter to college and university presidents that would promote EMS with testimonials and case studies highlighting financial benefits. The letter would suggest that a champion be appointed and would provide a link to practical web-based tools to get started. The Work Group has also been discussing a Best Management Practices catalog and speaking about EMS at higher education conferences.

For more information on this Group contact Harvest at ;

Regulatory Innovation
Bill Diesslin, Iowa State University (Chair)
This Work Group has focused on RCRA issues in particular hazardous waste determination. An analysis is being conducted on a potential rulemaking for waste determination. This analysis will examine similar programs in approximately eight schools as well as the specific implications such a rulemaking.
For more information on this Group contact Bill at ;

Chicago Meeting In July
The three Work Groups and the Coordinating Committee will be holding the Sector's first in-person meeting on July 8, 2004 in Chicago after the Annual CSHEMA Conference.

Bruce Backus,
Coordinating Committee
Assistant Vice Chancellor
Washington University in St. Louis

Chair Shai Morris, EPA
College & Universities Sector Program
U.S. Environmental Protection Environmental Health and Safety Agency
Office of Policy, Economics, and Innovation
Sector Strategies Division