The University of South Dakota is one of the nation�s �greenest� academic institutions, according to The Princeton Review. USD is featured in The Princeton Review�s 2011 �Guide to 311 Green Colleges,� a downloadable resource published in partnership with the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). USD was selected based on its �green� rating, which was calculated using data submitted during the 2009-10 academic year.
The Princeton Review, the New York-based education services company, lauds USD�s commitment to sustainability as well as The U�s pledge to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 7 percent from 2009 to 2011. USD formalized its commitment to sustainability in 2009 with the formation of a Sustainability Task Force, a committee devoted to ensuring that sustainability initiatives are monitored within the campus community. Additionally, retro-commissioned studies have been completed for several campus buildings and energy-saving technologies, including lighting sensors and water conserving plumbing fixtures, were installed.
The 2011 edition of �Guide to 311 Green Colleges� lists USD�s LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) silver-certified buildings, which include the Andrew E. Lee Memorial Medicine and Science Building, the Akeley-Lawrence Science Center and Coyote Village. LEED is an internationally-recognized green building certification system that was developed by the USGBC and provides third-party verification that a building or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance in energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.
Additional criteria used to compile the �Guide to 311 Green Colleges� include institutional responses to The Princeton Review�s Green Campus survey, which was administered during the 2009-10 academic year, and from online resources designated or referred to by participating institutions. The 2011 �Guide to 311 Green Colleges� is viewable online at www.princetonreview.com/green-guide.aspx.