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Report Card 2010

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University of Texas–Austin
College Sustainability Report Card 2010

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University of Texas–Austin

School details:

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Endowment: $16,111 million as of June 30, 2008

Location: Austin, Texas

Enrollment: 45,089

Type: Public


Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: No

Student Survey: Yes (see response)


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

Overall grade  
B -
The university president has approved a sustainability policy. UT Austin's sustainability staff include the director of sustainability and the alternative transportation manager. The President's Task Force on Sustainability recommends policies to the administration. Nearly all new appliance and computer purchases are Energy Star-qualified.
Energy efficiency upgrades include the installation of variable frequency drives as well as a quench valve system that provides over $1 million in natural gas savings annually. Information technology services is in the process of constructing a more efficient data center that will raise efficiency to 98 percent and will also reduce the overall energy needed to cool the machines.
UT Austin spent approximately 2 percent of its budget on locally grown food during the 2008-2009 academic year, and close to 6 percent on locally processed items. The university also purchases organic items, cage-free eggs, and hormone-free chicken. Vegan options are served daily. Customers receive discounts when they bring reusable bags and mugs. The Trash to Treasure Donation Drive collects unwanted items from students every spring.
UT intends to achieve LEED Silver or better on newly constructed buildings and has also pledged to use best practices in the product selection, waste management, and recycling in all new construction projects. The university is hoping for Gold-level certification for the Hearst Student Media Center, slated for completion in fall 2009. Water-saving retrofits include low-flush toilet valves and showerheads.
The Campus Environmental Center is the largest environmental organization on campus and also offers paid positions for students. The group's focus is on collaborating with university operational groups to institute change in sustainable practices. The annual Do it in the Dark energy competition encourages conservation.
All community members are eligible for carpool incentives, and city buses are free for anyone with a university ID card. UT also offers shuttle service between residential areas and outlying academic locations. The Orange Bike Project offers bicycle rentals free of charge. The master plan calls for pedestrian- and bike-friendly improvements in some areas of the campus.
The University of Texas Investment Management Company makes a list of investment holdings available online, and proxy voting records are sent to individuals upon request, as per open record law.
The University of Texas Investment Management Company aims to optimize investment return and has not made any public statements about investigating or investing in renewable energy funds or community development loan funds.
The University of Texas Investment Management Company provides its investment managers with general guidelines that determine its proxy votes on social and environmental resolutions, and provides its investment managers with specific corporate governance guidelines that determine its proxy votes on those matters.
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