The University of Alabama is committed to leadership in protecting the environment. Our objective is to reduce and eliminate whenever possible waste and emissions. We will work to minimize adverse impact to the air, water, and land through pollution prevention and energy conservation. By preventing pollution at its source the University of Alabama can realize cost savings, increase efficiency, maintain a safe and healthy working and learning environment, improve the quality of our research, and positively effect our environment. Environmental protection is everyone’s responsibility. The office of Environmental Health and Safety has the primary responsibility for the development of pollution prevention principles and the enforcement of guidelines and requirements.
Pollution Prevention Principles
By adopting these principles, The University of Alabama reaffirms its responsibility to protect the environment and the health and safety of its students, employees, and the public. The University of Alabama commits to continuous evaluation of its environmental management programs and systems, while improving their performance as a University.
The University of Alabama policy requires compliance with all applicable environmental laws and regulations. In addition, the University of Alabama will seek opportunities, utilizing cost-effective technologies and creative approaches, to exceed environmental requirements and demonstrate its commitment to environmental stewardship.
Protection of the Biosphere
We will actively seek to prevent pollution by minimizing our emissions to the environment. We will pay particular attention to the protection of the surrounding environment at existing facilities, and when planning new facilities.
Sustainable Use of Natural Resources
We will strive to eliminate any unnecessary use of water in our facilities and to improve the quality of our water discharges. We will employ practical land-management and conservation techniques to conserve the soils and vegetation at our facilities. We will continually seek to improve the efficiency of our resource use. We will actively pursue the potential for using renewable energy sources in new facilities.
Reduction and Disposal of Wastes
We will continue to reduce and, where practical, eliminate waste using source reduction, recycle/reuse, and substitution techniques. The handling and disposal of all waste will be conducted in a safe and responsible fashion in accordance with regulatory requirements.
Energy Conservation and Efficiency
We will continue to pursue energy conservation and efficiency improvements in our operations, and promote conservation practices and energy-efficient technologies.
We will strive to minimize the safety, health, and environmental risks to our employees, students, and community by using safe technologies, facilities, and operating procedures, and by being prepared for emergencies.
We will act in a prompt and responsible manner to correct any conditions in our operations that are known to result in a significant health, safety, or environmental impact.
We will ensure that senior management is fully informed about pertinent environmental issues. We will assign primary environmental responsibility to EHS.
Audits and Reports
We will audit our performance regularly to ensure compliance with these principles and with all applicable laws and regulations, and monitor our programs and practices to ensure that they continue to be effective. We support the concept of accountability for environmental performance and intend periodically to report on our progress in consistent, measurable terms.
Safe Teaching and Research
Through planning, analysis, and engineering the University of Alabama will work to minimize the health and safety hazards associated with teaching, research, and facility operations. Employees and students will be educated in the safe use of chemicals and the appropriate management of hazardous materials.
The University of Alabama will inform appropriate agencies, officials, employees, students, and the public in a timely manner about significant environmental and safety hazards known to be related to the University of Alabama. The University of Alabama will participate in discussions with the public and respond to questions related to our facilities or research. No action will be taken against personnel or students for reporting dangerous incidents or conditions to EHS. The University of Alabama will promote employee and student environmental awareness through training and informational sessions.