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State's campuses get passing grades on green issues

Kentucky's greenest campuses are at Berea College and the University of Louisville, judging from the College Sustainability Report Card 2009.

The report, released Wednesday, gave Berea a B overall and U of L a B-minus.

The only other Kentucky schools graded in the report were the University of Kentucky and Centre College, both of which received a C overall.

The report is prepared by the Sustainable Endowments Institute, a non-profit founded in 2005 to "advance sustainability in campus operations and endowment practices."

Schools also received grades in several specific areas.

Berea got an A in two categories, administration and transportation.

U of L got an A in two areas — food and recycling and in investment priorities.

UK got an A in transportation.

Meanwhile, members of the UK community gathered in the Student Center Grand Ballroom on Tuesday for the second annual "Big Blue Green: A Sustainability Showcase."

The showcase offered booths, displays and several discussion panels to highlight UK's practices and research in sustainability.

The speakers included Lexington Mayor Jim Newberry and Hank List, deputy secretary of the state Energy and Environment Cabinet.

Bob Wiseman, UK's vice president for facilities management, said in a release that participants last year said "they did not realize the full extent of sustainability projects, research, classes and green business practices at UK."

He said the showcase "goes a long way toward filling the information gap on this topic among faculty, staff and students."

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