UNCG Office of Sustainability

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D+ to B: What a Difference a Year Makes!

 

Details about UNCG’s green report card from the Sustainability Endowment are available.

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

Grade: B

 Administration  A

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro is formally committed to sustainability through the campus master and strategic plans as well as a sustainability policy. The University Committee on Sustainability works to implement sustainability programs in many areas, including academics, energy, and transportation. The university employs four full-time sustainability staff and regularly purchases EPEAT-certified computers.

Climate Change & Energy A

UNCG has completed a greenhouse gas emissions inventory and aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050. Building energy consumption has decreased since 2005 through the installation of energy conservation technologies such as electric metering, efficient lighting, and HVAC system upgrades. In 2007, UNCG entered into an energy services contract that is expected to reduce carbon emissions by 5,000 metric tons per year.

Food & Recycling  B

Dining services purchases local produce, dairy products, poultry, seafood, and baked goods, and all seafood served on campus meets Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch guidelines. The university recently instituted trayless dining and recycles electronics in addition to traditional materials. Source reduction initiatives include move-in and move-out collections as well as a year round materials exchange program.

Green Building  A

In compliance with state law, all new major buildings and renovations must be 30 percent more energy efficient than current state building code requirements. Ten buildings slated to be completed in the next three years will be LEED Silver certified or higher. The university has reduced water consumption since 2005 through the installation of low-flow faucets and showerheads, and xeriscaping technology.

Student Involvement  B

UNCG’s Green Games competition and the regional Campus Commute Challenge encourage students to live sustainably and reduce their carbon footprints. UNCGreen, an active student group, recently advocated for a student green free, and the student government has addressed sustainability issues related to transportation, dining, and waste reduction. The university’s sustainability office offers paid and unpaid student internships.

Transportation  A

All students, faculty, and staff can ride local transit buses for free, and students can purchase regional transit passes at a 50 percent discount. Ride-matching and car-sharing programs have recently been established, and a bike-sharing program will begin in the spring. The university fleet includes 17 electric vehicles and 31 vehicles that run on B20 biofuel or E85 ethanol.

Endowment Transparency C

The university makes a list of all holdings available at the investment office to the general public per open records law. The university does not make its shareholder voting record public.

Investment Priorities  A

The university aims to optimize investment returns, and the endowment is currently invested in renewable energy funds. The university also uses investment managers who consider environmental and sustainability factors.

Shareholder Engagement  F

 The university asks that its investment managers handle the details of proxy voting.

© 2007 – 2010 Sustainable Endowments Institute

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