Loyola University Chicago Libraries

Environmental Sustainability at Loyola: Sustainability at Loyola

Institute of Environmental Sustainability (IES)

The Institute of Environmental Sustainability



Our Vision for Loyola University Chicago


The mission of Loyola University Chicago’s Institute of Environmental Sustainability (IES) is to engage students in understanding and responding to local and global environmental issues by:

  • Delivering Core environmental science courses to raise awareness and action in all LUC undergraduates,
  • Preparing IES baccalaureate and graduate students for socially responsible professions in environmental science, policy, education, business, and health, and
  • Advancing our knowledge of environmental problems and developing solutions through original research and community outreach.  

The IES strives to advance sustainability in operations across all university campuses and to develop an environmentally conscious culture throughout the university. The IES advances the University’s mission of seeking God in all things and working to expand knowledge in the service of humanity through learning, justice and faith by providing a rich and transformational educational experience grounded in teaching and research excellence, experiential learning, and student entrepreneurial action in the service of nature, humanity, and the planet.


IES Initiatives and Partnerships

IES is advancing Loyola's work to create a more sustainable university community. Educating students, staff and faculty of ways to conserve natural resources and build conservation practices into daily behaviors is important to increase sustainability at Loyola as well as beyond the campus community.

Several sustainable initiatives are taking place at Loyola and they include building sustainability into the curriculum, conducting a campus sustainability baseline analysis, expanding the recycling program, and building infrastructure to reduce energy waste.

We are committed to the advancement of societal understanding and appreciation of the environment in an urban setting.  Creating a network of outreach opportunities helps all those involved develop a greater appreciation for others while building sustainable communities.


Strategic Plan, 2015-2020

How do we, as a university, live in and for this social reality and use our influence to transform it? Said another way, how might Loyola become a beacon of hope for others and an instrument for preparing young men and women for the project of building a more just, humane, and sustainable world?

To see how IES has begun achieving some of the above goals, download the PDF of the LUC Institute of Environmental Sustainability Annual report 2016-2017.


Loyola's Green Learning Community

Green Learning Community

The Green Learning Community is home to students who share a concern about the relationship between people and nature, and the impact of that relationship on human and environmental health.  Students explore ways in which we can all use fewer natural resources and learn how to become agents of change for a more sustainable society.  As a member of the Green LC you will become engaged in Loyola’s initiatives to develop a more sustainable campus, explore ways that the City of Chicago is making strides toward a more sustainable city, and experience much of the nature Chicago has to offer, such as the beautiful lake front and countless farmers’ markets.

Environmental Sustainability at Loyola

Green Campus

Thinking green takes root at Loyola University Chicago.

Loyola’s commitment to serve the human community extends well beyond academics. 

We are committed to transforming Loyola into a green campus through a number of sustainability initiatives, with the help of our students, faculty, and staff.

  • Students are learning to think green in academic programs, such as Solutions to Environmental Problems (STEP) courses, which focus on environmental efforts.
  • Loyola is working to advance sustainability across the curriculum in classes from the Stritch School of Medicine to the Corboy Law School to the Felice Rome Center and everywhere in-between.
  • The University's Center for Urban Research and Learning (CURL) seeks to improve people's lives in communities throughout the Chicagoland area, and includes several environmental initiatives.
  • One of the most ambitious green campus projects is the Richard J. Klarckek Information Commons. Located right along Lake Michigan at Loyola's Lake Shore Campus, this environmentally engineered building earned the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Environmental Design (LEED) Silver certification.

By incorporating environmentally friendly elements into all new construction plans and embracing new technology to help reduce waste and energy use, Loyola shares with you the importance of going green in our daily lives, both on and off campus.


Consumption Reduction & Recycling

Consumption Reduction and Recycling Program



Loyola University Chicago’s commitment to serve humanity strives to create environmentally sustainable communities. Loyola students, faculty, staff, alumni and the extended university community realize the current rate of resource consumption greatly impact the availability of resources for future generations and are committed to reduce material and energy use on campus and beyond.

Through education, Loyola is making great strides to conserve resources thereby reducing the university’s impact on the environment. Learn more about Loyola's recycling efforts here.


Driven by students’ interest in food and waste issues, Loyola composts in three main ways. Produce scraps and leaves are collected and composted at the Winthrop Demonstration Garden. In 2012, Loyola instituted its first commercial composting program at Simpson Dining Hall, where food scraps before and after meals are hauled to a Chicago-based facility to be processed into a soil amendment. Lastly, students and Loyola offices have the opportunity collect organic materials in 3-gallon buckets during the academic year. Cudahy Library is proud to be a participant in the campus-wide compositing program. Since the library began participating in Fall 2012, the Library Sustainability Committee has diverted several hundred pounds of compostable materials from landfills to the composting program.

Green Dining



Loyola University Chicago Dining Services' sustainability efforts, called "Green Thread," encompass a range of environmental stewardship programs, practices, and initiatives that are designed to enhance student awareness of our efforts at Loyola University Chicago to become more sustainable.

To learn more about what we are doing to become more sustainable on-campus, click on the links below:

Community and Social Justice Initiative

Environmental Initiatives

Campus Involvement and Communication