USU Receives Silver in National Sustainability Rating System
Why is USU Involved in Sustainability Reporting?
In 2007, Utah State University (USU) President Stan Albrecht signed an American College and University Climate Commitment, pledging for climate neutrality at USU by 2050. The commitment includes specific action items and target timeframes for sustainable behaviors ranging from securing renewable sources of energy to offsetting greenhouse gas emissions associated with travel. Since the climate commitment was signed, USU formed a Sustainability Council, a Student Sustainability Office, a Blue Goes Green sustainability grants program, a Carbon Offset program for travel, an annual Earth Week, an Alternative Transportation Week and more. Further information about the university's ever-growing sustainability initiatives can be found on the campus sustainability webpage.
What is the Reporting System?
The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS®) is run through the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). It is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS is intended to engage and recognize the full spectrum of colleges and universities—from community colleges to research universities, and from institutions just starting their sustainability programs to long-time campus sustainability leaders. STARS encompasses long-term sustainability goals for already high-achieving institutions as well as entry points of recognition for institutions that are taking first steps toward sustainability.
How did USU Rank in STARS?
USU achieved a silver rating in 2013 though STARS. The STARS report provides a snapshot of USU’s sustainability initiatives and accomplishments in the areas of education and research; operations; and planning, administration, and engagement. Over 200 higher education institutions have STARS ratings, including University of Utah and Weber State Universities at the bronze level and Westminster College at the silver level. Data from all reporting universities is available on the STARS website. USU's rating can be found at https://stars.aashe.org/institutions/utah-state-university-ut/report/835/