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AUS wins Sharjah Green Award for sustainability
As a testament to its efforts in maintaining a sustainable campus, American University of Sharjah (AUS) won in the Sharjah Green Award category at the annual Sharjah Economic Excellence Network Awards (shjSEEN). Organized by the Sharjah Chamber of Commerce and Industry on January 21, 2017, the award ceremony was held at the Expo Centre Sharjah, under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Member of the UAE Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah.
As a leading university, AUS strives to deliver excellent education and research in a sustainable manner. Recognizing its responsibility to the environment, the university is committed to reducing its environmental impact and improving its environmental performance. In keeping with this, AUS achieved 24 percent energy savings from 2010 to 2013 due to the implementation of various energy and water conservation initiatives across campus. These include the installation of solar water heaters, light sensors, and an energy efficient cooling system and fixtures.
Dr. Jeannette Vinke, Interim Chief Operating Officer, AUS, said, "Sustainability is a journey. We embarked on this journey a few years ago and are now seeing impressive results in all aspects. Our campus is more sustainable now that we have a smaller footprint. While we still have more to do to be fully integrated and sustainable, this award is a wonderful honor for the hard work done to date."
Other efforts at AUS include establishing recycling programs across the campus and a Green IT Policy, which includes an asset depreciation policy for all IT equipment and useful lifecycles for IT equipment.
The Sharjah Green Award recognizes organizations from the public and private sectors in Sharjah that are applying the best environmental practices to improve processes and deliver environmentally improved products or services in Sharjah. The award recognizes innovative projects by organizations that push the boundaries in an effort to reduce waste emissions and enhance sustainability. The award has different assessment criteria, which include recycling, waste and gas release minimization; use of "green" suppliers or materials; energy and/or water efficiency; training, safety, diversity, health and engagement of staff; and achievements.
This was the first time the Sharjah Green Award category was introduced at the shjSEEN Award.