Sustainability at RIT

We believe in the power of human ingenuity and creativity. We know that good design and smart technology can be tools for positive and sustainable global change. We expect our inspiration to benefit everyone, everywhere because it matters to us all.

RIT strives to infuse innovation and creativity into every element of our campus, and sustainability is central to our success. With academic program offerings that include product and packaging design, clean technology and policy, business, and environmental management, RIT is uniquely positioned to be a transformative force in the creation of a sustainable economy. But our efforts extend far beyond the classroom, empowering student-led sustainability programs, community engaged scholarship, and regional collaborations.

As a signatory of Second Nature’s Climate Leadership Commitment, RIT has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2030. This commitment is a driving force behind RIT’s sustainability strategy.

Community Garden

Four Pillars of RIT’s Sustainability Strategy

Global citizenship

Cultivate global citizens and leaders prepared to address the inter-connected ecological, economic, social, and ethical challenges of creating a sustainable future.

Campus as a living lab

Serve as a living laboratory for and international model of campus sustainability, with infrastructure and operations designed to reflect our leadership in sustainability, adaptation, and resiliency.

Innovative and interdisciplinary academic programs

Develop innovative curricula, programs, and research that foster a commitment to sustainability.

Community engagement

Partner locally and internationally with the communities in which it is engaged to advance sustainability and build resiliency.



Through its administration, faculty, staff, students, academic programs and scholarship, RIT contributes to the development and propagation of policies and practices that protect the natural environment and foster sustainable use of our material, environmental, and energy resources. It is appropriate then for RIT to lead by example by conducting its operations when feasible in this spirit and in recognition of its responsibility to protect human health and the environment.

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RIT will strive to conduct its activities in an ecologically and economically sound manner and will promote responsible consumption and environmentally sound practices among all members of the university community. We recognize that sustainable purchasing is a critical component of preserving our natural resources, lowering operating costs, and minimizing waste, and to this end we will:

  • Specify, whenever possible and reasonable, the use of sustainable, environmentally friendly systems, equipment, and materials.
  • Ensure that all supplies, materials, equipment, and services are procured at the lowest possible cost.
  • Comply with all relevant procurement and environmental regulations.
  • Investigate resource conservation, reuse and recycling options, and encourage adoption by all members of the university community.
  • Promote and maintain activities that encourage exchanges, swaps, and resale of surplus products and supplies.
  • Commit to purchasing the Energy Star-certified appliances and products.
  • Promote business with suppliers that consistently demonstrate sustainable and socially conscious business practices.
  • Work within the university and in the broader community in which we reside to share experiences and encourage the adoption of sustainable practices.
  • Develop and implement the use of assessment tools designed to evaluate the effectiveness of this policy and make changes where necessary.

Procurement Services Manual