With the St. Lawrence Seaway located 20 miles to the north and the Grasse River running through the southern end of campus, St. Lawrence is surrounded by water. Reducing the use of water on campus and preserving water quality in local aquatic ecosystems are part of the sustainability initiatives at St. Lawrence.

The successful installation of low flow toilets, waterless urinals and water saving faucets in the Johnson Hall of Science have led to plans to similarly retrofit old buildings across campus. While efficient bathroom and kitchen fixtures play an important role in reducing water use personal behaviors go a long way; remembering to turn off the water while brushing your teeth or taking a shorter shower are important steps for water conservation. Two other university initiatives that have reduced water usage are the replacement of our washing machines, with front loading machines saving 34% more water, and the removal of trays from the dining hall saving 100,000 gallons in dish washing each year.

One way St. Lawrence has worked to protect the water quality of the river running through campus is with the careful management of storm water runoff. As we have continued to increase impervious surface (through new building projects) we have also constructed an artificial wetland. Water runs across campus underground and empties into this wetland which uses plants and physical barriers to remove particles and other containments from the water before its discharge into the river.

Clean water is something that is often undervalued. St. Lawrence knows such a resource is not to be taken for granted and is doing our part to conserve usage and protect our local watershed.