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Report Card 2008

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Boston University
College Sustainability Report Card 2008

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Courtesy of Boston University

School details:

  Grade higher than last year


Endowment: $1,100 million as of June 30, 2007

Location: Boston, Massachusetts


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  
Boston University has recently launched a website detailing its efforts to become a more “green campus.” The assistant provost has been assigned to coordinate sustainability initiatives part-time and was certified as a LEED-accredited professional. Sustainability committees consisting of staff and faculty have been formed. The university has practiced green purchasing since 2004.
The university has made great efforts to increase energy efficiency on campus. Recent lighting retrofits have drastically decreased energy usage. A pilot program was implemented in biomedical research buildings to do continuous commissioning of HVAC systems. The central steam and cooling plant is being upgraded to a more efficient system. Despite these efforts, there are no plans to commit to carbon emissions reductions or to purchase energy from renewable sources.
Local produce, fish, and cheese are offered regularly in addition to organic produce, beans, and tomato sauce. The university is in the process of purchasing biodegradable to-go containers. Dining services will begin composting in fall 2007, although landscape composting has occurred since last year. A new recycling vendor began work on campus in summer 2007 in hopes of increasing recycling efforts.
The university is committed to a standard of “LEED certifiable” design for all new construction projects and major renovations. It is still investigating how to handle the increased costs of LEED certification.
The university purchased its first hybrid vehicle in 2005. A car-sharing program exists in conjunction with Zipcar and students and staff have access to discounted mass transit passes. A new student housing building will have bike lockers and showers. The existing bike facilities on campus are heavily used.
The university makes neither its proxy voting records nor its list of endowment holdings public. This information is only available to trustees and senior administrators.
The university aims to optimize investment return and is exploring renewable energy investment funds and community development loan funds.
A member of the university administration determines proxy votes.
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