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Report Card 2008

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University at Buffalo & SUNY (The State University of New York)
College Sustainability Report Card 2008

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University at Buffalo–SUNY

School details:

Endowment: $500 million as of June 30, 2006

Location: Buffalo, New York


Campus Survey: Yes

Dining Survey: No

Endowment Survey: Yes


Data compiled from independent research. For information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methods section.

Overall grade  
B -
President Simpson of the University at Buffalo–State University of New York has signed the Presidents Climate Commitment. Three full-time sustainability professionals staff the UB Green Office and the Environmental Task Force consists of approximately 25 staff, faculty, and students who evaluate campus environmental impacts and propose and promote new campus environmental policies and programs.
Since the late 1970s, UB has been a leader in energy conservation, completing hundreds of projects designed to increase energy efficiency, leading to savings estimated to be over $100 million. Since 2003, UB has purchased 12 million kilowatt-hours of wind energy. A photovoltaic array on the roof of Norton Hall produces 73,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity annually. The UB Climate Action Initiative includes an inventory of greenhouse gas emissions and recommendations for reducing their impact. UB also uses a 120-kilowatt combined heat and power system to produce energy and heat its swimming pools.
The UB Green Office established a composting program in 2006 in which preconsumer food waste is collected from campus kitchens. The recycling program diverts 30 percent of the waste stream; the university is aiming for a 50 percent diversion rate.
In 2004, the university published the UB High Performance Building Guidelines in order to prioritize energy sustainability and guarantee a commitment to high performance and green building principles. The university’s sustainable energy policy states that it will “strengthen its commitment to the principles of environmentally sustainable green building design for all new construction and major renovations.” Constructed in 2002, the Creekside Village Apartments Community Center at UB was the first LEED-certified building in western New York.
UB’s fleet has 3 hybrid vehicles and 58 compressed natural gas vehicles. Several diesel vehicles use B20 biodiesel and a hydrogen fueling station has been installed for use by two modified hydrogen-fueled Toyota Prius vehicles. “Bicycling at UB” is an initiative designed to improve bike riding among UB’s three campuses. It includes the university’s first on-campus, bicycle-borrowing program as part of a partnership with Buffalo Blue Bicycles, the city-wide, bicycle-lending program.
Open records law requires that proxy voting records and a list of endowment holdings be available to the public. Information is available at the SUNY investment office.
SUNY aims to optimize investment return and has not made any public statements about investigating or investing in renewable energy funds or community development loan funds.
SUNY asks that its investment managers handle the details of proxy voting.
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