At Principia, we are guided and strengthened by our foundation in Christian Science. As a community, we support values of universal love and the Golden Rule. We believe that love must be expressed intentionally, with strength, and through continuous action. We recognize and respect the humanity, experience, and identity of everyone. We dedicate ourselves individually and collectively to establishing inclusive and equitable educational, working, and living spaces where everyone belongs, matters, and is valued.
Principia College takes the challenge of sustainability education seriously. By promoting an understanding of the fundamental linkages between ecological, political, social, and economic systems—and inspiring students to think critically about the diversity of ethical issues raised by human interactions with the environment—we prepare students to take the lead in solving some of the most important challenges of this generation.
Principia has been sourcing 100 percent renewable electric energy since 2009, and each year we are recognized by the US Environmental Protection Agency as a 100 percent Green Power Partner. Our energy contracts were initially for a mix of solar and wind, but more recently are 100 percent wind. Largely as a result of this commitment, but also because of systemic efficiencies, the carbon footprint of campus residents is a quarter of the national average.
But carbon neutrality isn’t our only focus. We are addressing a wide range of sustainability issues at Principia College including green purchasing of electronics and furniture and sustainable food purchasing and procurement, along with food waste reduction and a strong recycling and composting program.
At 2,600 acres, the blufftop property is the 25th largest college campus in the United States. The hill prairies found along the bluffs overlooking the Mississippi River represent a significant portion of the last remaining prairies in Illinois. While Principia students and faculty appreciate studying and exploring the forests, prairies, and farmlands, it’s up to the Land Stewardship Program to care for an area that’s just over four square miles. Our Land Stewardship team is involved in a variety of activities from forest stewardship and prairie restoration to GIS projects and creating a network of natural trails.