Environmental issues are among the most important areas of concern for college students today. From biodiversity to plastic pollution to sustainable food systems to the climate crisis, students are increasingly concerned about the ways that our actions shape the world around us.  The College of Wooster takes these challenges seriously, and we are working hard to create a culture of sustainability on campus.  Our approach to sustainability is woven throughout all areas of the college, including in the classroom, in facilities operations, in student organizations and student programming, in administrative decision-making, in employee engagement, and in our relationship to the broader Wooster community.  Follow the links below to learn more about what we’re doing and how you can get involved.

Climate Action

Climate change poses one of the most urgent issues facing humanity, and The College of Wooster is committed to responding to this crisis with bold ambition. The science is clear. The earth is warming at an ever-accelerating rate; humans are the cause (principally because of greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels); and the results are already catastrophic for millions around the world.

More Information

ScotShare electric car

Sustainable Transportation

The College of Wooster launched ScotShare, an electric carsharing program for students, faculty, and staff, to promote sustainability and reduce emissions. Users can rent one of two Chevy Bolt EVs for $9 per hour, including electricity and insurance, for both personal and business needs. The College is also expanding its electric vehicle infrastructure with charging stations and transitioning its fleet to electric vehicles.

Transportation Around Town

Waste and Recycling

At the College of Wooster we do our best to recycle as much as possible, but it’s important to understand that effective recycling starts with you.

Learn More about Recycling

Sustainability in Action

The College of Wooster prioritizes environmental stewardship through various initiatives, including a learning garden, a 20,000 square-foot solar array atop the Scot Center, and the Swanson-Harbage Green Revolving Fund which supports projects that benefit the environment and the College.

Learn More

Get Involved

There are many ways Wooster students can get involved in making a different for sustainability, including simple things like carpooling and using ScotShare to interning with the Sustainability Office.

Learn More About How to Get Involved

Education and Research

Learn more about the interdisciplinary programs, pathways and projects that the College of Wooster offers for Environmental and Sustainability Studies.

Learn More


Sustainability Leadership

Brian Webb

Director of Campus Sustainability


Campus Dining and Conference Services has implemented the following to become more fiscally and socially responsible and operate in a more environmentally sustainable manner. We are reducing the use of disposable items and their environmental impact:

  • Even though safety measures during the global pandemic call for an increase in the amount of take-out meals on campus, our new mineral-filled polypropylene take out containers use 50% less plastic, but provide a rigid, leak-proof and microwaveable carry-out solution.
  • Compostable containers, drink cups, and cutlery are made from sustainable resources and are also used for some carry-out meals.
    Paper napkins and towels are comprised of unbleached, recycled fibers including post consumer waste.
  • Our reusable drink container and green to-go container programs have been temporarily suspended due to the global pandemic.
  • Dining hall salad dressings and most condiments were converted from individual portion control packets to bulk containers with pumps.
  • We have reduced the dining locations which sell any form of bottled water, and instead offer iced citrus water. Bulk water bottle filling stations are located in most campus buildings.

We are increasing our use of local foods:

  • Dining halls, cafes and MacLeod’s Convenience Store offer products from local farms and businesses, including Moreland Farms in Wooster, hydroponically grown greens from Green City Growers in Cleveland, Vigeo Gardens in Akron and Great Lakes Growers in Burton.
  • Dining hall menus feature fresh locally grown produce such as tomatoes, peaches, pears, grapes, strawberries, corn, beans, apples, squashes, and potatoes supplied by local farmers when in season.
  • Dining hall menus feature locally produced cheese, chicken, meats, and dairy. Fresh chicken is Halal, all-natural, growth hormone and steroid free. Liquid milk is rBST-Free.
  • Dining Halls offer coffee roasted by a family owned company in Ohio, exclusively serving fair trade, certified organic Wooster Blend.

We attempt to minimize our energy use and minimize our landfill impact:

  • The main dining hall conveyor was converted to allow for trayless dining, eliminating the use of cafeteria trays – saving energy, water, chemical use, and staff handling time.
  • Waste vegetable oil from kitchen deep fryers is collected and recycled by a professional service.
  • Campus deliveries are made using electric cart whenever possible.
  • Kitchens recycle all metal, plastic, and cardboard from food packaging.
  • Dishwashing machine with eco-rinse feature reduces water consumption nearly 50%.
  • Pulper in the main dining hall dishroom saves water and reduces volume of food waste by 90% before taken to the compost facility.
  • CFL dining room lighting replaced incandescent bulbs for 700,000 watt per day savings.

The Campus Grounds crew has implemented a number of environmentally sound practices in their efforts to keep the College of Wooster campus in beautiful condition, including:

  • Recycling all campus yard waste into mulch for use on campus
  • Using turfgrass that has lower water requirements
  • Soil testing for proper fertilization rates
  • Using fertilizers that are slow release
  • Using native plants in the landscape
  • Using perennials within the landscape
  • Recycling of construction debris
  • Using natural stones/rocks in the landscape
  • Parking blocks used on campus are made from recycled materials
  • Using new and improved 2 cycle engines
  • Parts washer solvents are recycled
  • Used oils and fluids are used for heating source for local businesses
  • All scrap metal is recycled
  • All trash that is pick-up off of the grounds is placed in recycling dumpsters
  • All trash waste produced in all Grounds Dept. work spaces is recycled
  • Irrigation plans are designed by an EPA Water Sense certified consultant
  • Treating the campus as an “Urban Forest”: 128 trees were planted in 2007, only 48 trees were removed
  • Ice Melt used is naturally safe on vegetation
  • Materials used in seeding practices are made from recycled materials
    94% of the vendors used by the Campus Grounds Dept. are Ohio based
  • One golf course mower has been converted to run on recycled vegetable oil from Campus Dining Services
  • Currently testing the use of biodiesel in a tractor used on the golf course
  • We also salute the Campus Grounds crew on their receipt of the 2007 Green Star Grand Award from the Professional Grounds Management Society for their landscaping work around the Kauke Hall renovation!

To highlight the importance of environmental sustainability on campus, Beau Mastrine of the campus grounds crew evaluated and described the importance of trees on The College of Wooster campus.

Built Environment

Our Facilities team works hard to improve the energy efficiency of our campus, decrease our carbon footprint, and lower our energy costs as well!

Scot Center Rooftop
Scot Center, our LEED Gold certified athletic center, is home to a 20,0000 square foot rooftop solar array that provides energy daily to the college. Check out the energy production here, in real time! All new constructions are always designed with LEED tandards in mind.

The College of Wooster also uses energy produced from a steam turbine on campus, and has shifted from the use of coal to natural gas. A STARS report was conducted in 2013, granting the college Silver status.

ScotShare at Wooster

Wooster wins Transportation Emissions Reduction award for successful electric carshare program

The College of Wooster and ScotShare, the College’s electric carshare program, won the 2023 Transportation Emissions Reduction award presented by the U.S. Green Building […]

Webb presents on religious resistance to climate action in the Faith Pavilion inside the COP venue, alongside other faith leaders from around the world.

Brian Webb seeks accreditation to send Wooster students to future United Nations Climate Change Conferences

Brian Webb, director of campus sustainability at The College of Wooster, knows climate change is a global issue that local communities can impact. His […]

Brian Webb, The College of Wooster’s director of campus sustainability

Brian Webb to speak on panel at United Nations Climate Change Conference

Brian Webb, The College of Wooster’s director of campus sustainability, will be a panelist at COP28, the 28th Conference of the Parties of the […]

Brian Webb, The College of Wooster’s director of campus sustainability

Q & A with Brian Webb, Director of Sustainability

This fall, Brian Webb, The College of Wooster’s first director of sustainability, has quickly established regular communications with the College community encouraging them to […]