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Arboretum honored for sustainability at first annual Spirit of Sustainability Awards

Published: 05/09/2013

The Donald E. Davis Arboretum received a Spirit of Sustainability Award from the Auburn University Office of Sustainability. Winners were announced at the first annual Spirit of Sustainability Awards ceremony on April 16. The campus-wide awards program was established to recognize Auburn University students, faculty, staff and alumni that exemplify the Auburn spirit by demonstrating accomplishments promoting sustainability on campus or in the community at large.

Over the past several years, the arboretum has committed to educating the campus community and the public about the relationship between land use, land cover and the impacts of stormwater runoff. The arboretum implemented numerous low-impact development practices, including an integrated system of pervious parking and walkways, small- and large-scale rainwater harvesting systems, rain gardens, an innovative network of underground stormwater detention, and a self-guided Water Tour of these innovations.

The Spirit of Sustainability Award recognizes the low impact development practices utilized by the arboretum and the facility's strong commitment to sustainable management of land and water, and educating and empowering others in the art and science of sustainable watershed management. Thousands of community members and hundreds of students are introduced to the principles and practices of nature-mimicking stormwater management techniques each year at the arboretum.

The awards program was created in part to generate awareness of sustainability initiatives and to acknowledge those who are making significant contributions toward economic, social and environmental wellbeing. The Spirit of Sustainability Awards program is also intended to inspire further innovations, initiatives and actions toward a flourishing future.

"Sustainability is a high priority for Auburn University, and there are a lot of people affiliated with Auburn who are doing impressive things. We wanted to make sure those folks are recognized and their work is celebrated," said Mike Kensler, Director of the Office of Sustainability. "We find their stories of commitment and accomplishment impressive and inspiring."

For more information on the Spirit of Sustainability Awards, click here.

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