National environment group names Grand Valley a greenest school: Grand Valley State University was named one of the country’s greenest universities by the Sierra Club, the largest national grassroots environmental organization in the United State. The university placed 40th out of 162 schools, and is the highest-ranking Michigan institution on the list. This is the second time Grand Valley has been included in the Sierra’s Club’s annual list of “Coolest Schools,” a list that ranks schools that have a strong commitment to environmental improvement, are helping to solve climate problems and are making significant efforts to operate sustainably. The ranking was based on scores given to universities that completed a questionnaire on measurable environmental goals and achievements, presented by the Sierra Club, Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, Sustainable Endowments Institute and Princeton Review. In early 2013, Grand Valley became the only university in the state and one of 45 in the country to receive gold status after completing the survey for the second time. Grand Valley scored high in areas of operations, innovation and planning. Norman Christopher, director of Grand Valley’s Sustainable Community Development Initiative, said Grand Valley’s score improved from 585 points last year to 654 points this year, showing significant overall improvement. Sierra Club has more than 1.4 million members and supporters nationwide. For more information, contact the Sustainable Community Development Initiative at or (616) 331-7366.