Testimonial provided by: Roxane Beigel-Coryell, Sustainability & Recycling Coordinator, SOU
For nearly a decade, BEF has worked with Southern Oregon University (SOU) students and staff to find projects and solutions that meet our institutional goals and priorities. Their support has included providing consultations, project management and funding support.
In 2007, the Associated Students of SOU (ASSOU) partnered with BEF to successfully launch a “Vote Yes” campaign to approve a five-year, self-imposed student renewable energy fee or Green Fee. During the subsequent five years, the Green Fee allowed the university to purchase Renewable Energy Certificates and Carbon Offsets to mitigate carbon emissions from 100 percent of SOU’s energy use.
As the sunset date approached for the student fee, ASSOU once again sought the expertise of BEF to support our shifting priorities. While SOU students wanted to continue supporting sustainability initiatives, they wanted to keep their dollars focused on local projects. BEF worked with students to identify the opportunity for SOU to become the first university to balance 100 percent of its water use by purchasing Water Restoration Certificates® from a project in the local Klamath River Basin. This partnership with BEF achieved two of the university’s goals: to be a leader in higher education sustainability and to support regional sustainability efforts that were meaningful to our students.
SOU is also committed to increasing renewable energy generation on campus. Bridge funding and grants provided by BEF helped our campus bring two clean energy generation projects to fruition. With financial and project management support from BEF, SOU added 185-kilowatts of solar to campus in less than one year. BEF also worked with the university to supply touchscreen educational kiosks where students can learn more about campus sustainability and renewable energy initiatives.
Without the friendly and professional team at BEF, these projects would not have been possible.