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Report Card 2011

University at Buffalo–SUNY
College Sustainability Report Card 2011

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B+

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University at Buffalo–SUNY

School details:

 Grade higher than last year

 

Endowment: $410 million as of June 30, 2009

Location: Buffalo, New York

 

Campus Survey: Yes (see response)

Dining Survey: Yes (see response)

Endowment Survey: Yes (see response)

Student Survey: Yes (see response)

 

Please note: Data was collected in summer 2010 and may no longer be current.

 

Data compiled from survey responses, when available, and from independent research, when needed. For more information on data collection and evaluation, please see the Methodology section.

 
Overall grade 
B+
The university is committed to sustainability through a formal policy and components of the strategic plan. UB Green, the sustainability office, manages initiatives along with the Environmental Stewardship Committee. UB has a green purchasing policy and buys environmentally preferable paper products. Most computers purchased for the campus meet EPEAT certification standards.
UB aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2030. The university has reduced building energy consumption through programs such as temperature setbacks and the installation of efficiency technologies. A 73-kilowatt photovoltaic array sits atop Norton Hall, and 20 percent of electricity purchased for the university is from renewable sources.
UB spends about 20 percent of the overall food budget on local items and buys organic produce and dairy products. All haddock, pollock, and tilapia purchased for the campus are sustainably harvested. Exclusively fair trade coffee is served on campus, and refill discounts are provided for students who bring reusable mugs. Preconsumer and some postconsumer food scraps are composted at every meal, and in the past year, over 540,000 pounds of food were diverted from traditional disposal.
The Creekside Village Community Center is LEED certified, and the Alfiero Center meets LEED Silver criteria. The university has reduced water consumption since 2005 through the installation of technologies such as water metering and low-flow faucets. UB also uses a rain garden and vegetated swales for stormwater management.
One paid student intern and ten volunteers work on campus sustainability initiatives along with fifteen paid eco-reps. Students achieved a 35 percent reduction in waste during RecycleMania last year. The UB Environmental Network, UB Engineers for a Sustainable World, and the UB Student Association Department for the Environment work to advance sustainability awareness and practices on campus.
Ride-matching and preferable parking are provided to carpoolers, and UB runs a shuttle to local shopping centers. The university runs a bike-sharing program and recently began a partnership with a car-sharing program. The campus motor fleet includes 10 electric vehicles, 30 biofuel vehicles, and 5 hybrids.
The university makes a list of all holdings available to trustees, senior administrators, and other select members of the school community, and makes a list of asset allocation and cash available to the public. The information is available on the school website. The university does not make its shareholder voting record public.
The university aims to optimize investment returns and is exploring, but not currently invested in, renewable energy funds, community development loan funds, and on-campus sustainability projects.
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The university is unable to vote proxies for most of the endowment, which is invested in mutual funds or other commingled investment vehicles. For other funds, the university asks that its investment managers handle the details of proxy voting.
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