Sustainability at Mines

The mission of the Colorado School of Mines is education and research in engineering and science to solve the world’s challenges related to the earth, energy, and environment.

Academics and Research

Learn about how Mines is working toward a greener future through cutting-edge research and novel curricula.


Learn about how Mines is working to be a steward of the environment through campus-wide initiatives and green operations.

Get Involved

Learn how Mines is working to build a sustainable campus culture that will help students live in a more environmentally-friendly way.

Campus Initiatives

Learn what initiatives Mines is pledging to in order to champion a more sustainable future for the campus.

Mines Professor Investigating Glacier Retreat

Newly digitized vintage film has doubled how far back scientists can peer into the history of underground ice in Antarctica, and revealed that an ice shelf on Thwaites Glacier in West Antarctica is being thawed by a warming ocean more quickly than previously thought. This finding contributes to predictions for sea-level rise that would impact coastal communities around the world. 

Read the full story here.

Shut the Sash!

In Colorado, a single open fume hood can consume as much energy as one home! The high energy use is due to fresh, conditioned air constantly being exhausted through them to the outdoors. An easy way to reduce the energy consumption of a fume hood is to SHUT THE SASH when not in use.

More details.

Energy Efficiency Day — Oct. 2nd

Join Mines Sustainability in preparing for National Energy Efficiency Day on Wednesday, October 2nd!

Universities and students can do a lot to reduce their relatively high energy usage every single day, and we hope to champion these small changes as a way to make our campus all the more green! See this EE Day article on how universities and students can work to reduce their energy consumption!

Curious About Recycling in Colorado?

Are you curious about what actually happens to your recyclables after it is whisked away by Alpine Waste? Do you wonder what is actually recyclable or whether or not that bit of peanut butter in the jar makes it unrecyclable?

If these are questions you normally find yourself asking, see here for an article by Xandra McMahon about how Colorado’s single-stream recycling infrastructure actually works.

Solar Decathlon – InterHouse

The Mines’ Solar Decathlon Africa team has completed their design rendering for the competition! To be more sustainable, the team will construct their InterHouse on-site in Morocco, with the exception of the eco-friendly model home’s interior wet wall.

The competition takes place in Ben Guerir, Morocco September 13-27, 2019. See the story covered by CBS Denver!

A Word From the President


At Mines, our sustainability efforts are focused in three main areas:  teaching, research, and facilities. Students from nearly every discipline have opportunities to take courses that relate environmental issues to society, culture, engineering, and applied sciences.

Mines faculty are engaged in a broad spectrum of sustainability-related research projects, ranging from water purification research to the development of photovoltaic technologies.

Our facilities team is changing the way our campus runs and operates, emphasizing efficiency and cost-savings, in addition to conservation.