Overall Rating Bronze - expired
Overall Score 40.97
Liaison Sherri Mason
Submission Date June 30, 2020
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Penn State Erie, The Behrend College
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 2.00 Kevin Engle
Foreman, Grounds and Landscape
Maintenance & Operations
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area (i.e. the total amount of land within the institutional boundary):
440 Acres

Figures required to calculate the total area of managed grounds:
Area (double-counting is not allowed)
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses a four-tiered approach 440 Acres
Area managed in accordance with an organic land care standard or sustainable landscape management program that has eliminated the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides in favor of ecologically preferable materials 0 Acres
Area managed using conventional landscape management practices (which may include some IPM principles or techniques) 0 Acres
Total area of managed grounds 440 Acres

A brief description of any land excluded from the area of managed grounds (e.g. the footprint of buildings and impervious surfaces, experimental agricultural land, areas that are not regularly managed or maintained):

Areas not regularly managed or maintained were excluded. These include: wooded areas, an old golf course (120 acres), and abandoned housing properties acquired for land.

Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an IPM program:

A copy of the IPM plan or program:
A brief description of the IPM program:

downloaded from UP

Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an organic program:

A brief description of the organic land standard or landscape management program that has eliminated the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides in favor of ecologically preferable materials:

A brief description of the institution's approach to plant stewardship:

Although the use of native plant species in landscaping is not prioritized across the entire university, there are efforts to prioritize sustainable behaviors in landscaping through reducing water usage, using soils made from natural composting methods on campus, etc. In addition, there are efforts for certain areas of campus to be dominated by native species.

Penn State Behrend has conducted and maintains an inventory of trees on its campus, and has set forth a Physical Plant policy to "identify, acknowledge, and protect" irreplaceable trees on campus. To that end, "Heritage Trees" and "Heritage Tree Groves" have been designated; these are defined as trees/groves with "exceptional historical, cultural, and/or aesthetic value because of their age or their association with an important event/person". Once so designated, Heritage trees/ groves are given special consideration by grounds maintenance staff to ensure that they are protected. More information about Penn State's trees can be found here: http://www.lorax.psu.edu/

A brief description of the institution's approach to hydrology and water use:

The University's storm water program promotes the use of conservation design practices that preserve and use natural critical hydrologic areas to minimize the impact on the environment. The University is always installing new and innovative facilities to reduce the quantity and improve the quality of runoff from its campuses.

The University uses bioretention as a method of treating storm water by pooling water on the surface and allowing filtering and settling of suspended solids and sediment at the mulch layer, prior to entering the plant/soil/microbe complex media for infiltration and pollutant removal. Rain gardens or bioretention techniques are used to accomplish water quality improvement and water quantity reduction.

A Drought Contingency Plan has been developed by the Office of Physical Plant. The plan outlines steps to take under increasing drought pressure as conditions move from drought watch, to drought warning, to drought emergency.

A brief description of the institution's approach to materials management and waste minimization (e.g. composting and/or mulching on-site waste):

Leaves, grass clippings, plant debris, brush and logs are collected from campus landscape maintenance. The leaves and plant debris are composted and the brush and logs are ground and manufactured as mulch. The mulch and compost is used in campus landscape maintenance and for research projects; any excess compost is sold to the public.

A brief description of the institution's approach to energy-efficient landscape design:

Penn State has a comprehensive landscaping design strategy. Design techniques include:
Planting trees for the purpose of providing shade, planting windbreaks to slow winds near buildings, green roofs and minimizing paved areas. On-campus composting and chipping is utilized to reduce greenwaste hauling. Stock is purchased from local growers as appropriate to minimize energy used for transportation.

A brief description of other sustainable landscape management practices employed by the institution (e.g. use of environmentally preferable landscaping materials, initiatives to reduce the impacts of ice and snow removal, wildfire prevention):

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.