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Our Committment

Extensive sustainable policies and procedures support our commitment to a healthy environment for people and planet.

Sustainable Grounds Management


Landscape Services is currently phasing in electric equipment for daily use. With end-of-year funds from FY22 we purchased blowers, shears, weed eaters, edgers and chain saws, along with multiple batteries and chargers, for our team. We also hope to add mowers in the near future. The equipment will take the place of our regularly used gas-powered tools after leaf season is complete. While we will still keep some gas-powered equipment available for emergencies and situations that need more power, our goal is to become primarily electrified. 

Here is a list of our equipment to date:

Equipment Type


Husqvarna 550iTX backpack blower                           


Husqvarna BLi950X battery 31.1Ah                           


Husqvarna QC500 charger                                           


Stihl FCA140 straight edger                                           


Stihl FSA135R trimmer                                                   


Stihl HLA135K hedge trimmer                                       


Stihl HLA66 hedge trimmer                                           


Stihl AL301 battery charger                                           


Stihl AP300S battery                                                       


Stihl MSA160C chainsaw                                               


Stihl HTA135 pole saw                                                   


Stihl HTA85 pole saw                                                       



Leaf Management and Re-Use

With over 14,000 trees on campus, many that are deciduous, leaf management at Georgia Tech is challenging. To keep our walkways and bike paths clean and safe we utilize a combination of giant Versa-Vacs and several smaller vacuums. During leaf season we collect three to four loads of leaf material, per week, at 60 cubic yards per load. These leaves are taken to a site at the edge of campus where they are composted to the point that the material can be used for mulch or soil amendments.

Mulching Mowers

All mowers in our department are "mulching mowers". This means that they are equipped with discharge plates, mulching baffles and mulching blades. These pieces work together to ensure proper placement of clippings. By mulching all turf on campus, we eliminate a large amount of organic waste from the landfill while providing moisture and a natural fertilizer for the turf areas.

Natural Mulching

Preserving our bio-load from landscaping activities and re-using that load on campus helps prevent the production of additional greenhouse gas emissions. When organic matter decomposes in an anaerobic environment, methane is produced. Methane is one of the most potent greenhouse gas emissions, being 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide across a 100-year period.


Our tree maintenance crew captures all wood from our maintenance and removal operations. Some of the wood logs are saved and re-used in building structures, where possible. We also require any outside contractors to leave their chips on campus. All wood chips are used on campus as healthy mulch for our smaller shrubs and beds. We estimate that this practice keeps 600-700 yards of wood chips on campus and out of the landfill.

Irrigation and Storm Water Management

Rain Gardens

The construction of the Klaus building in 2007 resulted in the installation of the first significant rain garden on the Georgia Tech Campus. This project also included reforestation as part of campus sustainability initiatives. Rain gardens are also located behind Boggs Chemistry, behind Laser Lab, in the EBB/EcoCommons and at the Carbon Neutral Building.

Smart Irrigation with Water Recycling

Thirty-three percent of our irrigation water use is from cisterns and wells. We have set a goal to increase that number to 50% on all new construction projects. We utilize two irrigation management technologies, Calsense and Toro. This irrigation system can be remotely controlled when needed.