Sustainability plan charts course forward

Sustainability Director Elida Erickson

Sustainability is woven through everything we do at UC Santa Cruz. From research to purchasing, we seek to minimize our environmental footprint. Our latest Campus Sustainability Plan will ensure we go even further.

I am excited to invite everyone in our campus community to the Campus Sustainability Plan kick-off event on Thursday, Oct. 19 from 2–4:30 p.m. at the UC Santa Cruz Arboretum. Please register to attend online. We will unveil our 5-year Campus Sustainability Plan and share funding resources for staff, faculty, and student sustainability projects. Vice Chancellor Sarah Latham will deliver some brief remarks.

The Campus Sustainability Plan is the result of hard work from several committees, made up of faculty, staff, and students, that looked at how we can advance sustainability in every part of our university. Last spring, we invited everyone on campus to weigh in on the draft plan. The feedback was exceptional and insightful.

Our new plan focuses on four areas: 

  • Learning & Culture
  • Materials Management & Food Systems
  • Natural Environment & Infrastructure
  • Climate & Energy

Each area includes specific goals, strategies, and first-year actions to help move us forward. The plan also acknowledges that concern for the environment intersects with social issues.

We want to build on our existing policies and programs, and strengthen the ties between operations and research.

The plan is ambitious and calls on us to make big steps forward: How can we achieve net zero emissions for all new capital projects? How do we achieve and maintain zero waste by 2020? How do we significantly reduce our use of potable water?

I know there's will across campus to be more sustainable. And thanks to everyone's help, our Campus Sustainability Plan will guide the way.