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Report Card 2008

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University of Virginia
College Sustainability Report Card 2008

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University of Virginia

School details:

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Endowment: $4,800 million as of June 30, 2007

Location: Charlottesville, Virginia


Campus Survey: Yes

Dining Survey: Yes

Endowment Survey: Yes


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

Overall grade  
B -
The University of Virginia signed the Talloires Declaration in 1991 and enacted an updated energy and sustainability policy in 2006. UVA has an energy program manager whose explicit task is to reduce energy use on campus, and the university also plans to hire a sustainability manager in 2007. The Office of the Architect chairs the Sustainability Advisory Committee comprised of students, faculty, and staff.
The university won the 2001 Energy Star Partner of the Year award and has made a concerted effort toward energy conservation in its buildings. Aspects of the program include specific goals for reducing heating, cooling, electricity, and water usage that are annually reviewed and documented. Ninety percent of the campus’s lighting systems have been retrofitted with energy-efficient models.
UVA dining is the first dining program in the Commonwealth of Virginia certified by the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality in the Virginia Environmental Excellence Program. Some local fruits, vegetables, meat, and most dairy products are made available to students. Dining services has a comprehensive recycling program and is planning a pilot composting program.
The university recently adopted a policy that all new campus building and renovation projects will meet LEED certification criteria. Currently, nine major projects in Charlottesville and five major projects at UVA’s College at Wise are seeking a minimum of LEED certification. The Office of the Architect incorporates an array of sustainability initiatives into all aspects of campus planning.
The parking and transportation department uses 20 percent biodiesel fuel in its bus fleet. Ninety-five percent of undergraduate students are serviced by fare-free university transportation, and a fare-free program providing access to local transit was established in 2007. The university has updated its bike plan and has developed a Bike Smart Map.
The University of Virginia Investment Management Company (UVIMCO) makes information about both endowment holdings and proxy voting records available to the board, including trustees and administrators. Information is available at the investment office.
UVIMCO aims to optimize investment return and currently invests in funds that make renewable energy investments. The university maintains an active dialogue with donors and may request that UVIMCO offer a fund that considers environmental/sustainability factors.
The UVIMCO Investment Committee makes decisions on proxy votes involving environmental, social, and governance issues.
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