Steve Kahl


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Steve Kahl

Director of Sustainability/ Sustainability

Steve Kahl - Director of Sustainability Unity College
Phone: 207.509.7295

I am a practical career environmentalist and also a lifelong energy nut. This means that I look for logical and cost-effective ways to do the right thing environmentally while being outspoken when social habits and government policies are misguided and short-sighted.   I believe that the solution in both the environmental and energy areas is to develop incentive-based economic and policy solutions to help change the cultural norm, and I strive to model behavior consistent with these beliefs.

There is solar hot water and solar PV on my own home (which is net zero carbon).  I recently received grants to do a net zero energy building retrofit and to install a 130KW solar PV array at a waste water treatment plant. My funded research has included acid rain, stormwater and stormwater utilities, lake water quality, environmental policy, and solar PV mapping. 

My career has taken me from Maine DMR (1970s) and DEP (1980s) to be the founding Director of the Environmental Chemistry Lab and later the George Mitchell Center For Environmental Research at UMaine (1989 to 2004). As a Maine native, I spent time in exile as founding Director of the Center for the Environment at Plymouth State University in NH before returning to Maine in 2011 as Director of Environmental and Energy Strategies at Sewall Company in Old Town.  I am thrilled to be at Unity College which is poised to be a national leader for both environmental and energy innovation. 

I have trouble saying ‘no’ to interesting opportunities so have served on the boards of the Maine Volunteer Monitoring Program, Friends of Acadia, several NGOs in NH, Land Use Regulation Commission, and am currently the Board President of the Maine Lakes Society.   I run, ski, hike, micro-spike, paddle, and generally am interested in most any non-motorized outdoor recreational activity.