American Public University System (APUS) today announced that it has been recognized by the American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) for its use of solar energy and progress toward achieving climate neutrality.
APUS, the only fully online ACUPCC signatory and a charter member, recently completed construction of West Virginia’s largest solar array and opened its new energy-efficient Finance Center on September 18. Its participation reflects a promise to continue to work toward reducing the school’s already low environmental impact, according to Dr. Wallace E. Boston, APUS president and CEO.
“We are honored to be recognized by ACUPCC for our ongoing efforts to promote a more sustainable future for our students, our communities and our country," said Boston. “Our online platform not only enables enhanced access and affordability for our remote students, it also reduces our overall carbon footprint to a small fraction of that generated by most other participating schools.”
APUS was highlighted by ACUPCC for its sustainability efforts, along with some larger research institutions, in the organization's report, "Celebrating Five Years of Climate Leadership." The recognition is the most recent milestone in the school’s ongoing initiatives, including the recent construction on reclaimed brownfields of its two-year-old Academic Center and new Finance Center, each of which is targeted for LEED certification at the Gold Level or higher, per standards set by the US Green Building Council.
In related news, APUS was also recently honored by the Preservation Alliance of West Virginia for its historic preservation efforts in Charles Town, West Virginia. Since establishing its headquarters there a decade ago, APUS has renovated 17 downtown homes and structures into modern buildings with updated HVAC, wiring and plumbing, as well as renovations associated with current building code requirements and LEED guidelines for energy efficiency. The University has worked to ensure that its renovated and newly-constructed buildings maintain the historical character of the other buildings and homes in the downtown area, while avoiding occupying vacant retail space.