Sustainability Master Plan Metric Update

By Melanie Stewart

Attaining the TravelSmart goal early was a huge success; if you aren’t a TravelSmartie, I hope you will consider becoming one.  Transportation is just one of the six goal areas in the Sustainability Master Plan, but all are important to our mission.

We are excited to release our 2017 Metric Update, an easy-to-read report containing a metric update, explanation, and specific initiatives contributing to those numbers.  I hope you’ll take a look at it, but here’s a brief synopsis:


  • Baseline: Produced 153,964 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2eq) each year.
  • Goal: Achieve net zero building emissions by 2030.
    • Progress: Produced 125,825 metric tons of CO2eq.

Efforts to reduce emissions have led to a cumulative reduction of 179,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide, equivalent to the annual emissions of 19,300 homes.


  • Baseline: 225,164,787 gallons of water per year
  • Goal: Reduce annual gallons of water used by 54% by 2030.
    • Progress: Used 193,446,478 gallons.

Cumulative water reduction is 189,600,000 gallons, equivalent to 287 Olympic-sized swimming pools.


  • Baseline: 25% of materials diverted from landfill.
  • Goal: Zero Waste by 2030.
    • Progress: 23% of materials diverted.

Waste reduction and recycling efforts have led to 2.1 million pounds of material not going to the landfill since 2012.


  • Goal: Maintain current density of 73,326 gross square feet of built space per developed acre by 2023
    • Progress: 55,513 square feet of built space per developed acre


  • Baseline: 12% of employee/student commutes use active transportation mode (walk, bike, bus, or carpool)
  • Goal: 20% of employee/student commutes use active transportation mode by 2023
    • Progress: 22% of campus employees/student
  • New Goal: 35% of commutes use active transportation by 2030


  • Baseline: Sustainability Engagement Score is 45 (out of a possible 100)
  • Goal: Achieve a Sustainability Engagement Score of 75 by the end of 2023
    • Progress: Current Sustainability Engagement Score is 59

We will need to have a high rate of engagement in order to meet our ambitious, updated, goals. In light of that and in order to align the Engagement goal timeline with the other goals, a new goal has been approved:

Achieve a Sustainability Engagement Score of 85 by 2030.

Thank you for helping to reduce energy/emissions, conserve water, reduce/reuse/recycle, and all of the other little things you do that add up!  If you want to be more involved, considering becoming a LiveGreen Ambassador.

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