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CalPoly's Regenerative Studies for Environmental Sustainability

"Regenerative" processes restore, renew or revitalize their own sources of energy and materials, creating sustainable systems that integrate the needs of society with the integrity of nature.

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Parker West pressure washing There's something beyond green -- it is regenerative sustainability. The ability of the earth to regenerate. Scientists are beginning to make bold claims that the earth has reached a point of degradation that it cannot regenerate its system of life support sub-systems. Water systems are degraded. The ocean's animal and plant populations have been reduced below sustainable levels. Forests, fresh water aquifers...all these systems are being used up, polluted, fragmented and the natural system is breaking. That's what regeneration addresses.

Regeneration is complex -- encompassing ... well, everything! Environmental, social systems, plants, insects, mammals, streams and oceans, even dew. Learning about the regenerative natural process is an interdisciplinary effort, and more colleges are addressing sustainability with this interdisciplinary approach. California State University - Pomona is one.

The mission of the John T. Lyle Center for Regenerative Studies at CSU-Pomona is to advance the principles of environmentally sustainable living through education, research, demonstration and community outreach.

The term "regenerative" describes processes that restore, renew or revitalize their own sources of energy and materials, creating sustainable systems that integrate the needs of society with the integrity of nature.

Located on 16 acres (6.5 ha) within the Cal Poly Pomona University campus, the Center researches and demonstrates a wide array of regenerative strategies, including low-energy architecture, energy production technology, water treatment, organic agriculture, ecological restoration and sustainable community development. Courses cover such subjects as: Nature as Model; Habitat & Community Practice; Coalition Building and Regenerative Practices.

Touring the Lyle Center

The Lyle Center offers tours during weekdays and is designed to demonstrate the integration of sustainable systems that meet the needs of any community. Over 2,000 people tour the Center annually, learning about energy-efficient building design, energy production, food, water and waste systems, ecological restoration and sustainable community processes.

Individuals and small groups are welcome to visit the Center during business hours and informally explore the property. A self-guided tour is available in the Center's main office.

Classes and other large groups can arrange a guided tour by Center staff. Phone 909.869.5155 or email

Virtual Tour of the Lyle Center

This virtual tour provides brief descriptions and illustrations of the major community systems demonstrated at the Center.
  • Building Systems
  • Energy Systems
  • Food Systems
  • Water Systems (coming soon)
  • Waste Systems (coming soon)
  • Ecological Context (coming soon)
  • Human Community (coming soon)

The Center is administered by the College of Environmental Design, and offers a Master of Science in regenerative studies as well as a minor program at the undergraduate level. Faculty are drawn from departments across campus, creating a unique interdisciplinary learning environment.

The Center actively supports research and outreach by Cal Poly Pomona faculty, students and staff that directly supports our mission of advancing principles of environmentally sustainable living. The Center offers space for conducting research projects and outreach programs, provides resources through their faculty fellowship program, and offers logistical support for facilitating grants and contracts.

The mission of the Lyle Center is to advance the principles of environmentally sustainable living. The Center uses the term "regenerative" to emphasize the development of systems that restore and revitalize themselves, ensuring a sustainable future. The Center pursues a comprehensive and ambitious research agenda which includes, but certainly is not limited to, activities in the following:

  • Renewable energy
  • Landscape ecology
  • Environmentally-sensitive building and landscape design
  • Ecological restoration
  • Sustainable agriculture and aquaculture
  • Sustainable community development
  • Human behavior and sustainable systems
  • Environmental and economic policy analysis
  • Environmental education and cultural awareness

The Center offers a unique Master of Science degree in Regenerative Studies (MSRS) that prepares students to find successful solutions to environmental problems in the 21st century. The program prepares individuals for Ph.D. programs in environmental fields, or professional careers in public agencies and private non-profit organization, and in business, education, environmental design, engineering, planning, resource management, and other related fields.

John T. Lyle Center for Regenerative Studies
4105 West University Drive
Pomona CA 91768.
Kyle D. Brown, Director

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