What is sustainability?

Sustainability is the intersection of environmental, economic, and social concerns. Sustainability is a holistic way of looking at the world that recognizes anything we do in one of these spheres has impacts on the other two. In a sustainable society, a diversified economy ensures social equity for all and environmental responsibility by all. In truth, nobody knows the exact combination of energy sources, governance style, economic portfolio, or rate of resource consumption that will definitively make our society "sustainable". It's important to recognize the current limits of human knowledge while doing our best to make our world a more sustainable place.

Why do we need sustainability on campus and in the Wabash Valley?
  • 71% of the campus community indicated being somewhat or extremely concerned about conservation and sustainability issues.
  • At ISU, we’re preparing students for the green economy; in Terre Haute, we're working to bring green jobs to our community and promote local businesses with sustainability practices.
  • In 2012, Vigo County was ranked fourth in the state for adult obesity. We work to increase the walkability and bikeability of our community and provide fresh, local foods to the Wabash Valley
  • We care about our community’s natural resources. We are committed to restoring the Wabash River to its full potential and encouraging its use for recreation. We also support the cleaning of the many environmentally contaminated properties in our community.
  • To create, in the Wabash Valley, a living laboratory for research and implementation of sustainable practices.
  • To educate and actively engage ISU students, public schools, and the Wabash Valley community in sustainable practices.
  • To make ISU an exemplar of a sustainable university community.
  • To create a diverse income stream for the Institute that includes research grants, philanthropic giving, service contracts, speakers fees, conference fees, intellectual property, and patents related to sustainability in order to fund ICS’ work in the community.
  • To be a community leader on transitioning to a more sustainable society.
  • To become a resource for sustainable practices by enhancing technology transfer and information dissemination concerning sustainable solutions.

Contact Info

ISU Institute for Community Sustainability Logo
Nick McCreary, Coordinator
219 North 11th Street
Terre Haute, IN 47807
(812) 232-8502