UCSF Sustainability Stories

University of California System Receives Prestigious Climate Leadership Award


Second Nature and the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) have announced that 10 academic institutions have been chosen to receive their prestigious Third Annual Climate Leadership Awards. The University of California system is one of the winners!  The award recognizes the University of California system’s achievements in cutting the carbon footprint of its campuses.

UC campuses, labs and medical facilities are among the greenest of any university in the country, driven by a groundbreaking Policy on Sustainable Practices that was implemented in 2004. Among the policy’s achievements:

*  Goals by 2020 (which UC is on track to meet) to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent, to make 20 percent of its food purchases sustainable and to send zero waste to landfills.

*  93 U.S. Green Building Council LEED-certified facilities, the most of any university in the country.

*  Investments in energy efficiency and conservation that have cut costs by $32 million annually.

“UC is committed to being a sustainability leader and will continue to seek innovative solutions for reducing energy use and cutting greenhouse gas emissions on our campuses,” said Nathan Brostrom, UC’s executive vice president for business operations. “The Climate Leadership Award is a testament to the hard work of our students, staff and faculty, who are making UC the greenest university in the country.”

The awards are presented to ACUPCC signatory schools that demonstrate unparalleled campus innovation and climate leadership that helps transition society to a clean, just and sustainable future. The winners were among 20 finalists chosen by Second Nature’s board. The ten recipients represent the diversity of institutions of higher education and are located throughout the United States.

“These institutions are leading the way for the academic community by demonstrating how sustainable practices can be put into place on campus that have a long-term impact on creating a sustainable society for the benefit of all,” said Dr. Anthony D. Cortese, president of Second Nature. “They have all shown tremendous creativity and an unrelenting commitment to integrate sustainable practices into their campuses and society as a whole.”

All winners will be recognized in an award ceremony with their peer institutions at the ACUPCC Climate Leadership Summit in Washington, DC on June 21 and 22.
The winners include: 

Doctorate Granting University
Arizona State University, AZ
University of South Florida, FL
Baccalaureate College
Allegheny College, PA
Luther College, IA
Associate/Tribal College
Austin Community College District, TX
Haywood Community College, NC
Master’s Colleges & University
Florida Gulf Coast University, FL
University of Central Missouri, MO
Special Focus Institutions / Other
Pratt Institute and PALS, NY
University of California System, CA