Initiatives

AsheFILL It UP

UNC Asheville is reducing waste and helping local non-profits in our area through our AsheFILL It UP program.

Anyone with a reusable cup gets a .15¢ discount on any beverage purchased at any retail location on campus. If the cup has one of our AsheFILL it up stickers on it, the customer can scan the code using the Cupanion Rewards app. Cupanion Rewards tracks your personal reusable cup usage. With every scan, an additional .15¢ per purchase will be donated by Chartwells to Food Connection, a local organization that redistributes uneaten meals from our dining hall to people in need in the community.

But wait! There’s more! Each time you scan your cup on campus you collect 20 points, and when you reach 1000 points you receive a free beverage.

 

Supporting Pollinators

On September 12, 2016, UNC Asheville officially launched its very first campus hotel. Rather than serving the tourist population, this one serves the locals! Local bees, that is.

Through the combined efforts of students, faculty and staff from multiple colleges, non-profit organizations and sponsoring businesses, the Bee Hotel is now providing much needed habitat to our native pollinator populations.

The Bee Hotel is a large sculptural installation that was designed and built for the purpose of providing solitary native pollinators with a place to lay their eggs and over-winter. Each individual cell of the Bee Hotel is furnished with dead plant stems, bamboo, drilled wood pieces and mud blocks (as well as some additional decorative elements). These materials will be replenished annually to avoid the propagation of pathogens that could be harmful to the Hotel’s residents. The Bee Hotel is located in the main pollinator garden on University Heights, just across from the entrance to the North Asheville Tailgate Market lots.

The Bee Hotel provides a place of refuge for our native pollinators that are confronting a number of environmental threats, including massive habitat loss. Below are a few reasons why providing habitat to pollinators is important.

  • Native pollinators are a necessary and integral part of our Western North Carolina ecosystem
  • Many pollinating insect species are currently either threatened or in severe decline
  • Pollination is a major ecosystem service that supports or local agricultural producers and provides us with much of our fruit and vegetable supply

The Bee Hotel is just one of many projects that UNC Asheville is pursuing as an official Bee Campus USA. We welcome groups and individuals who would like to take a tour to learn more about our pollinator-friendly activities. Feel free to email us for more information.

 

Flip the Switch

Reducing electricity use in our library, offices, classrooms, labs, dining areas, and residence halls can add up to significant environmental gains, as well as real financial savings. Historically, UNC Asheville has been a leader among UNC system schools in regards to the energy efficiency of our facilities. Replacing our campus lighting with LED fixtures generated substantial additional savings, but we found that hotter temperatures and increased use of lamps and small appliances were limiting our overall conservation goals. That’s why we started the Flip the Switch initiative for faculty and staff in 2017. We provided tips to reduce energy consumption as well as information about how the university’s heating, cooling and energy systems work.