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Saint Peter's University

Business Information
Name of Organization: 
Saint Peter's University
Organization Type: 
Business Description: 
Saint Peter's University is a comprehensive coeducational Jesuit Catholic University located in Jersey City and founded in 1872 with a branch campus: Saint Peter's at the Meadowlands, located in Lyndhurst. The University has the following schools: School of Arts and Sciences; School of Education; School of Business; School of Nursing; School for Professional ad Continuing Studies. Saint Peter's was a signatory of ACUPCC in 2008. Many sustainable practices have been implemented over the years to reduce our carbon footprint and educate students and the entire university community in the importance of sustainability. From a cogeneration plant to business courses related to the environment, a galaxy of initiatives support our green commitment.
Contact Person: 
Eileen L. Poiani, Ph.D.
Chair, Sustainability Council; Special Assistant to the President; Professor of Mathematics
Business Location: 
Saint Peter's University
2641 Kennedy Boulevard
07306 Jersey City , NJ
United States
40° 43' 37.4124" N, 74° 4' 14.7684" W
Renewal Date: 
Monday, November 28, 2022
Management and Leadership
Adopt Environmental Policy Statement
Description of Action: 
Leadership is demonstrated not only in the early signing of the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (2008) and the commitment to reduce our carbon footprint but also in the persistent and all-encompassing determination to be resilient. With very limited budgets the University has leveraged creative ways to move ahead in education, research, and service. Pathways to Distinction, The Saint Peter’s University Strategic Plan, incorporates goals for sustainability. The Sustainability Council, established in 2012, oversees the initiation, development, and implementation of strategies, programs, and events to support sustainable practices across the university community. Council members include faculty, students, administrators, and staff. SAVE (Students Against Violating the Earth) sponsors a robust series of programs throughout the year to foster sustainable practices and educate about climate change. The initiatives described herein address many of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Saint Peter’s University is also committed to the goals in Laudato Si’, the encyclical of Pope Francis on the “care for our common home.”
Waste Reuse
Description of Action: 
Sodexo Dining Services introduced a reusable recyclable container for taking food from the dining room. Students return the containers to the dining room where they are sanitized and reused.
Waste Recycling
Description of Action: 
New recycling bins were placed in each residence hall room and apartment with instructions along with a campaign and speakers to promote recycling for Fall 2018.
Energy Efficiency
Description of Action: 
In 2003 R3 Energy Management Audit and Review LLC was engaged to install energy efficient lighting upgrades. Starting in 2009 the university invested in the creation of a 480 kW cogeneration plant to replace older boilers. In 2013 a Green Energy Command Center was dedicated to monitor the use of energy and reduce our carbon footprint. In 2011 the new Mac Mahon Student Center opened as a LEED Silver building. In 2016 the university installed an energy management system (EcoGenesis SmartGrid) to control the hitherto uncontrolled steam valves serving Dinneen and McDermott halls on the West campus. The system monitors steam supply in correlation with outside air temperature and optimizes heat supply to the two buildings, making the system more efficient than before. As a result of this upgrade, the university is estimated to be saving over 18,000 therms of natural gas annually, on a weather-normalized basis. The cost savings for the first year were estimated to be over $17,000 (variable annually with the price of natural gas).
Money Saved: 
Therms Saved: 
Renewable Energy
Description of Action: 
Starting in 2011 solar panels were installed on West campus buildings and later expanded to the East campus. The 200kW solar array produced 242,753 kWh of electricity in 2016 and 424,132 kWh in 2017.
kWh Saved: 
Industry Specific Practices
Description of Action: 
• Saint Peter’s University belongs to AASHE and complies with the reporting requirements of Second Nature. Second Nature and Greener U collaborated with Saint Peter’s to host the Nov. 3, 2017 Workshop, BYOP (Bring Your Own Problem), to foster a collaborative approach to solving problems related to sustainable practices. • The university is active with NJHEPS (New Jersey Higher Education Partnership for Sustainability) which includes colleges and universities from both the public and independent sectors. Dr. Poiani, Chair of the Sustainability Council, serves on the NJHEPS Steering Committee. • The Chair of the Sustainability Council presented a poster at the October 2018 AASHE Conference in Pittsburgh. • Since 2014 Saint Peter’s University has had the distinction of being listed in The Princeton Review’s Guide to Green Colleges. • Through a small grant from the Independent College Fund of New Jersey for its Green Campus Project, Saint Peter’s is sponsoring a lecture series for the 2018-2019 academic year entitled: Green is the New Blue: Creating a Sustainable Peacock Campus. The student-focused lecture series by experts in sustainability and climate change will culminate in a student competition on ways to enhance sustainable practices at Saint Peter’s University. • For Fall 2018, a new minor in Business Sustainability was introduced.
Support the Well-Being of Your Employees
Description of Action: 
For decades Saint Peter’s University has been smoke-free inside its buildings. With the coming of the 2017-2018 academic year, the campus became fully smoke and tobacco free. This step was the culmination of lengthy study by a campus-wide task force seeking to improve the quality of life for all and to eliminate second-hand smoke. It comes with programs to foster smoking cessation and continue to educate on the many health risks of smoking and tobacco use in all its forms as well as vaping and related materials. In this way the atmosphere of the campus will be healthy for employees and all who visit. To enhance the campus from a visual and environmental perspective, a Native Plant Garden for Birds and Pollinators was developed over the 2018 summer led by a Professor of Biology and students. The beautiful flowers bloom next to the bird feeder which is part of the Cornell University Bird Watch Project. Access to the Recreational Life Center, the Fitness Center, and programs like cardio caliente, indoor cycling, yoga, and kick boxing are available free to all employees. Fitness competitions among Jesuit colleges and universities and with other groups are also encouraged and supported. The university hosts a Health and Benefits Fair for employees along with Wellness Fairs for the entire university community.
Support Community Initiatives
Description of Action: 
The Campus Kitchen was created by the Office of Community Service in Campus Ministry on 9/11/14 and is staffed by students under the supervision of the Associate Director of Campus Ministry for Community Service. As of August 2018, the Campus Kitchen had recovered 44,000 pounds of fresh food from area companies and SPU Sodexo dining services and served 41,000 meals. A refrigerated van donated by an alumnus enables the collection and distribution of food. This commitment seeks to address the “Zero Hunger” UN Sustainable Development Goal. In 2017 Saint Peter’s established the Food Pantry and Clothes Closet to serve the greater community. In one year, 11,000 pounds of food, clothing, toiletries, and household items were distributed.
Adopt a Cause or Project in your Community
Description of Action: 
• In Fall 2018 a student designed a t-shirt with the slogan “Dare the World to Save Our Planet.” They were sold with proceeds going to purchase a new recycling bin for the library. • Ocean October 2018 focused attention on the problem of plastics in our waterways and how they adversely affect sea life and the food chain. • Celebrated annually, Earth Week boasts an array of events and programs across disciplines with speakers, Environmental Jeopardy, and a Nature Photo Contest, to tree planting and blessing on Arbor Day. • The Great American Smokeout takes place along with a Vision Symposium that raises funds for the Himalayan Cataract Project. • Sensitive to bringing attention to endangered species, the university hosted a program in 2017 with a live penguin from Jenkinson’s Aquarium.
Sustainable Jersey
Description of Action: 
Saint Peter’s also collaborates with the new Office of Sustainability in the Jersey City Mayor’s office and other local environmental organizations.
Finished Application: 
Member Since: 
Wednesday, November 28, 2018