UT recognizes that its purchases make an impact on the environment and on the surrounding community. Therefore, UT strives to find sustainable alternatives

The energy conservation policy states that university purchases of equipment, systems, and appliances will be ENERGY STAR certified whenever possible.
The University of Tennessee has been recognized by the EPA as the #1 Green Power Purchaser of colleges and universities in the nation and the SEC. In 2005, the University of Tennessee began purchasing green power through TVA’s Green Switch Program to stimulate demand for renewable energy in the Tennessee Valley and southeastern United States and offset a portion of the campus’ energy consumption. In 2015-2016, the University of Tennessee purchased 245,666,000 kWh of Green e-certified renewable energy credits (RECs) which offset roughly 70% of emissions produced on campus (including on campus cogeneration, stationary sources, fleet transportation, refrigerants and chemicals, fertilizers, and purchased electricity).
UT Dining works to order local produce whenever possible. Buying local not only gives money back to the local economy but it cuts down on the carbon footprint for each item.Fair Trade Coffee programs are initiated through the two coffee brands on campus: Starbucks and Java City.

All dining locations use bleach free, 100% content recycled napkins and work to purchase Green Seal chemicals.