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Report Card 2010

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University of Washington
College Sustainability Report Card 2010

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University of Washington

School details:

  Overall College Sustainability Leader

  Campus Sustainability Leader

  Endowment Sustainability Leader


Endowment: $1,650 million as of June 30, 2008

Location: Seattle, Washington

Enrollment: 31,760

Type: Public


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: Yes (see response)


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

Overall grade  
A -
The Environmental Stewardship Advisory Committee is developing a climate action plan. Four staff in the Office of Environmental Stewardship work to coordinate campus policy and operations related to sustainability. A green cleaning policy mandates the use of environmentally friendly cleaning products, and sustainability is mentioned as a goal in the strategic and master plans.
Departmental green teams act as a resource to the broader UW community and promote energy conservation. The replacement of lighting fixtures on campus has resulted in an energy-use reduction of 1.4 million kilowatt-hours. The university purchases 14,956,000 kilowatt-hours worth of renewable energy credits each year, representing 6 percent of UW's total energy use.
Dining services spends 27 percent its total budget on local and organic foods, including cage-free eggs and hormone- and antibiotic-free beef and milk. Confinement-free beef and sustainably harvested seafood is also purchased. Fair trade coffee, chocolate, and beverages are available. UW runs composting programs in all dining locations and diverts 54 percent of organic, fiber, construction, and container waste from landfills.
The university has committed to build all state-funded new construction and major renovation projects to at least LEED Silver standards. Seven buildings on campus are LEED-certified, and 22 additional projects are LEED-registered. High-efficiency toilets and urinals have been installed in many locations, and low-flow plumbing fixtures and high-efficiency laundry units have been installed in residence halls.
UW is home to more than ten student-run organizations that focus on sustainability issues. Resident advisers participate in a sustainability training and Students Expressing Environmental Dedication (SEED) promotes sustainable living in the residence halls. Sustainability internships on campus are available to students.
All campus community members participating in the U-PASS program receive unlimited public transit passes and discounted parking rates for carpool groups. A bike repair shop operates on campus and a car-sharing program is available. More than 75 percent of commuters to the Seattle campus use environmentally preferable transportation. The university has a fleet of more than 300 alternative-fuel, hybrid, and electric vehicles.
UW makes a lists of endowment holdings and votes cast on proxy resolutions on a company-specific level available to the public upon request, as per open record law.
The university aims to optimize investment return and is currently invested in renewable energy funds. Investment policies give consideration to the degree of corporate responsibility exercised by the companies in which investments are made.
UW provides its investment managers with general guidelines that determine its proxy votes. Shareholder engagement also includes letter-writing campaigns and sponsorship of shareholder resolutions.
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