Students and University Projects

Bottled water free campaign

The Water Bottle Free commemorative art mural in the S.U.B.
The Water Bottle Free commemorative art mural in the S.U.B.

One of Bishop's most proud student led initiatives is our bottle-water free campus. Spearheaded by the Environment Club and supported by SDAG, the countless hours of research and awareness education they performed helped the entire Bishop’s community to better understand the negative environmental impacts of drinking bottled water. The bottle-water free team informed Bishop's students of the social, environmental, economic and health outcomes that accompany the production, consumption, waste and policies of bottled water.

The Environment Club wrote and implemented a 2 year plan for making Bishop's a bottle-water free campus. The plan was presented with a campaign which included a presentation given by students and guest speakers, many informative posters and booths and finally a Rock-4-Water concert. Thanks to the support of the Bishop’s student body and community we are able to celebrate the title as a fully bottle-water free campus.

Take a look at the documents that helped make this student project successful and form your own campaign!


Construction of the Geothermal energy systemIn 2008 Bishop’s started the "Geothermal Project". This installment aims to replace the old steam heating and cooling system, which operates on natural gas and oil, by a new system running on natural energy from the earth. This project allows Bishop’s to take advantage of cost effective, reliable, sustainable and environmentally friendly energy.
With technological advancements we no longer need to be located next to tectonic plate boundaries to access geothermal energy. Below our very own Abbott soccer field are 57 geothermal wells drilled 160m in depth which tap into the thermal energy emanating from the earth.  Heat pumps were then installed on campus to transform this low grade thermal energy into high grade usable power. Finally we installed an underground energy loop connecting all of Bishop’s buildings to the main central energy plant.

Our new source of geothermal power consists of 25% electricity from Hydro-Québec and 75% from free underground thermal energy. Bishop’s is currently saving more than 2300 tons of CO2 per year compared to our 2006 consumption, and more than 1 million cubic meters of natural gas per year (equivalent to heating 337 big single family houses at 2,000 sq.ft. each).

This effort makes Bishop’s University the first geothermal district heating system in Canada.
For more details, see the Bishop's Presentation March 1, 2013.

Construction of the Geothermal energy system on Abbott field.
Construction of the Geothermal energy system

Carbon Care Certified Campus

Carbon Care logoAs of February 2014, Bishop’s has become a Carbon Care Certified Campus. By attaining the Carbon Care Certification, Bishop’s has demonstrated its commitment to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and its responsibility to preventing climate change.

With the help of the Sherbrooke Enviro-Accès consulting firm, Bishop's is demonstrating its commitment to local, sustainable development by quantifying it’s total direct greenhouse gas emissions and the carbon capture factor of our woodlands. Check out the Greenhouse Gases Inventory Report (PDF) and presentation (French) from 2012 to see a detailed account of our GHG emissions and the steps Bishop’s has taken to improve sustainability on campus.

New recycling binsSince 2008, Bishop’s has completed a number of projects to reduce its negative impact on the environment. We have implemented a decentralized geothermal heating system, high efficiency lighting and automated building controls for heating, cooling and ventilation, provided recycling, garbage and compost bins, and have begun to purchase electric carts.


For more details, see the Bishop's Presentation March 1, 2013.


Eco-Week is designed to promote and share ecological knowledge with the Bishop’s and Lennoxville community.  This interactive week is organised by the BU Environmental Club and consists of various forms of media such as film screenings, guest speakers and a round table, to generate open discussions among faculty, students and the community.

See the Eco-Week Web page for the list of upcoming and past events.

Lennoxville Farmer's Market

Lennoxville Farmer's MarketThe Lennoxville Farmer’s Market was established by our very own Professor Bardati.  The aim of this initiative is to bring quality fruits, vegetables, and other goods from within a 50km radius of Lennoxville to its citizens.  This aids in creating a sense of community, provides buyers with product knowledge (where it comes from, how it’s grown, who grows it), supports small scale farms and reduces transport emissions and the need for preserving chemicals.

Find out the dates and information on our Web page, visit us on Facebook, or contact us at

ECO Floor

Eco FloorThe ECO Floor was created to provide an ecologically sustainable live and learn community for students.  This opportunity allows individuals to adopt an environmentally conscious lifestyle with the help of knowledgeable mentors.  It provides them with opportunities to engage in the community, explore their surroundings and become leaders on campus.

For more information contact Tirza Harris, the ECO Floor leader at and visit their webpage.

Gaiter Gears and Snowshoes

The Outdoor Club snow shoeing up Mt. Washington.
The Outdoor Club snow shoeing up Mt. Washington.

Thanks to the efforts of the BU Environmental Club and SDAG we have been able to assemble Bishop's first bicycle and snowshoe rental fleet.
The aim of this project is to provide sustainable recreational activities to all. Biking and snowshoeing create minimal negative impacts on the environment, whilst rental fees are kept within their respective accounts in order to maintain and purchase new equipment. The goal is to create a self-sustaining project.

Come to Patterson to rent a bike! Find hours, pricing and regulations on the Gaiter Gears page. Stop by the Sportsplex in the winter to rent some snowshoes!

Fair Trade Coffee

Fair Trade Coffee logoDuring the 2009-2010 school year, SDAG and the Dinning Committee researched and replaced Bishop's coffee with Fairtrade certified coffee.  By purchasing fair trade coffee, Bishop's demonstrates its commitment to supporting proper pricing of products (through floor pricing and premiums) for small scale farms and their laborers in the volatile international coffee market.   This creates strong, long-term trading relationships between partners.

Fair Trade Coffee Website.

Tray-less Cafeteria

This student led initiative with help from Sodexo, was able to remove trays in Dewhurst Cafeteria.  With no trays, students are forced to make thoughtful food choices, instead of filling their trays with food that goes to waste. This project has reduced food waste, water and energy consumption.

Bio Swales / Rain Garden

This project was created and initiated by graduated student Tegan Maharaj.  A bioswale or rain garden is a low-lying area strategically sown with indigenous plants, used to control flooding and filter runoff from impermeable surfaces like parking lots or buildings.  This is a pertinent initiative as the Sportsplex construction is occurring on known flood zones beside the Peter Currie Marsh, having great potential impact on natural flooding and filtration processes. A pilot project has been established to determine its efficacy before future bioswales are developed.  See the proposal to see what is to come!

Pedestrian Friendly Campus

Throughout campus, roadways are being altered to encourage a non-motorized campus.  The roadway extending from the library to the intersection near Morris House is prohibited for regular vehicles (access is allowed for emergencies, deliveries and security).  Future plans look to create a more pedestrian friendly road beside Divinity House.

John H. Price Sports and Recreation Centre Renovation

The renovation of the 1975 John. H. Price Sports and Recreation Centre is underway.  The new state of art center is tailored to promote health and well-being with higher air quality, natural lighting, ease of access and updated equipment and facilities. The up-to-date center will be able to accommodate more students, sports teams, conferences and tournaments.

See the preliminary drawings of the new Sports Centre (PDF).

Future Projects

An idea originating from the BU Environmental Club, the Adopt-a-Bin program would be used to increase the recycling bins in the classrooms while not increasing the workload of the BU Custodial staff.

If you're interested in this project or simply would like to voice your support, contact the Bishop’s University Environmental Club.

Library Learning Commons
The creation of a more dynamic library atmosphere that can cater to the needs of each department is being developed. This will include renovations, equipment and information updates, and a rock garden designed for peaceful studying.

Bright flowers used to deter pests from other plants in the B.U Community Garden.
Bright flowers to deter pests from other plants.