Solar Spring Break
Fort Lewis College students can participate in GRID Alternatives Solar Spring Break, installing solar panels in under-served communities. In 2019 and 2018, students from Engineering, Sociology, and many other majors installed solar panels in remote communities on the Navajo Nation. For more information, email Dr. Laurie Williams or email Dr. Becky Clausen.
Fort Lewis College is a signatory to the Second Nature Carbon Commitment, aiming for carbon neutrality by 2050, with interim emissions reductions targets every five years. As of 2020, we have reduced climate-changing emissions by 62%. See our latest progress at Second Nature. Action to achieve the carbon commitment includes composting, recycling, alternative transportation, renewable energy, and more.
If you have an electric vehicle, you can charge it for free on campus. There are four chargers, including one ADA-accessible parking space in the South Rim Parking lot adjacent to Sitter Family Hall. There is no cost to power up, but you must comply with campus requirements regarding parking permits.
Campus is surrounded by hundreds of miles of hiking and biking trails that make commuting not just sustainable but scenic, too. Durango also runs bus service up to campus. But, if neither of those do it for you, and you need to park a car on campus, check to see if your car qualifies for the 20% parking permit discount offered for fuel-efficient vehicles.
Fort Lewis College is committed to clean energy. There are solar panels on the Student Union, Sitter Family Hall, and Berndt Hall, which includes a solar hot water system and a rooftop photovoltaic system. Over half of Fort Lewis College’s electricity is generated with wind and solar renewable electricity through participation in the La Plata Electric Association (LPEA) Green Power program and the on-campus solar panels.
Fort Lewis is committed to environmental practices even as we grow. Four buildings on campus are currently LEED Gold certified. LEED is the preeminent program for the design, construction, maintenance and operations of high-performance green buildings.
Sitter Family Hall, the home of the Geosciences and Physics & Engineering Departments, is the fourth LEED® certified facility on campus. Features include double-glazed low-e windows, state-of-the-art heating, ventilation, and air conditioning system, rooftop mounted solar panels, recycled construction materials and more.
The Student Union features a vegetated roof, and two solar energy projects: a solar hot water system and a roof-top photovoltaic system, in addition to a state-of-the-art composting system.
The Biology Wing of Berndt Hall also features solar power along with bicycle storage, open space preservation, and extensive natural lighting.
Animas Hall was Fort Lewis’s first residence hall to earn a LEED Gold rating. Animas Hall features recycled and locally-produced building materials, along with low or no-water landscaping.