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The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 69.28
Liaison Austin Eriksson
Submission Date Feb. 29, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

California State University, Northridge
PA-2: Sustainability Planning

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Austin Eriksson
Sustainability Program Manager
FPDC
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have current and formal plans to advance sustainability in the following areas? Do the plans include measurable objectives?:
Current and Formal Plans (Yes or No) Measurable Objectives (Yes or No)
Curriculum Yes Yes
Research (or other scholarship) Yes Yes
Campus Engagement Yes Yes
Public Engagement Yes Yes
Air and Climate Yes Yes
Buildings Yes Yes
Dining Services/Food Yes Yes
Energy Yes Yes
Grounds Yes Yes
Purchasing Yes Yes
Transportation Yes Yes
Waste Yes Yes
Water Yes Yes
Diversity and Affordability No No
Health, Wellbeing and Work No No
Investment Yes Yes
Other --- ---

A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Curriculum:

CSUN strives to reduce its own footprint on the environment and to educate its students and the broader campus population on sustainable practices. The campus therefore acts as a living-learning community where students can gain knowledge in sustainability and put that knowledge into practice. Our education plan in sustainability incorporates both informal education, which includes events, signage and employee training, and formal education, which includes an expansion of sustainability offerings in the curriculum. CSUN has a strong record of research and development partnerships between its academic colleges and physical plant management, which include the design and installation of its sustainable energy facilities. The university plans to expand partnerships to provide additional opportunities for students to actively participate in sustainability practices whilst helping the campus achieve its own sustainability goals.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Curriculum plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Expand education on sustainability principles and practices to entire campus population
2. Increase formal educational offerings in sustainability
3. Increase opportunities for hands-on student learning in sustainability
4. Increase research opportunities in sustainability


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Curriculum plan(s):

Education Working Group


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Research (or other scholarship):

CSUN strives to reduce its own footprint on the environment and to educate its students and the broader campus population on sustainable practices. The campus therefore acts as a living-learning community where students can gain knowledge in sustainability and put that knowledge into practice. Our education plan in sustainability incorporates both informal education, which includes events, signage and employee training, and formal education, which includes an expansion of sustainability offerings in the curriculum. CSUN has a strong record of research and development partnerships between its academic colleges and physical plant management, which include the design and installation of its sustainable energy facilities. The university plans to expand partnerships to provide additional opportunities for students to actively participate in sustainability practices whilst helping the campus achieve its own sustainability goals.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Research plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Expand education on sustainability principles and practices to entire campus population
2. Increase formal educational offerings in sustainability
3. Increase opportunities for hands-on student learning in sustainability
4. Increase research opportunities in sustainability


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Research plan(s):

Education Working Group


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance Campus Engagement around sustainability:

CSUN has been making continuous efforts to engage our campus and community in our sustainability efforts. This can be seen through our website, signage, posters, social media, contests, events, employee development sessions, training's, etc.
CSUN has established several strategies to improve our campus engagement around sustainability both in academics as well as the campus operations. These strategies can be found in the CSUN Sustainability Plan under the Administration Section.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Campus Engagement plan:

Strategies:
1. Incorporate the objectives defined for sustainability into established campus, division, and program planning processes.
2. Improve coordination, infrastructure, data collection and record keeping in support of sustainability efforts.
3. Utilize sustainability as a branding opportunity, particularly for recruitment.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Campus Engagement plan(s):

Administration Working Group


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance Public Engagement around sustainability:

CSUN has been making continuous efforts to engage our campus and community in our sustainability efforts. This can be seen through our website, signage, posters, social media, contests, events, employee development sessions, training's, etc.
CSUN has established several strategies to improve our campus public around sustainability. These strategies can be found in the CSUN Sustainability Plan under the Administration Section.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Public Engagement plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Incorporate the objectives defined for sustainability into established campus, division, and program planning processes.
2. Improve coordination, infrastructure, data collection and record keeping in support of sustainability efforts.
3. Utilize sustainability as a branding opportunity, particularly for recruitment.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Public Engagement plan(s):

Administration Working Group


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Air and Climate:

CSUN has signed the Second Natures (formerly ACUPCC) Climate Commitment. We have submitted our Climate Action Plan to Second Nature as of January 2016 and are planning on achieving climate neutrality by 2040.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Air and Climate plan(s):

Please see our Climate Action Plan at: csun.edu/sustainability


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Air and Climate plan(s):

CSUN's Sustainability staff will be primarily responsible for tracking progress and updating the CAP.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Buildings:

Energy use is the single largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions from the United States, accounting for some 80% of total emissions. Only 10% of electricity generation in the U.S. is from renewable sources, and only 7% of total energy used comes from renewables. Electricity distributed by Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to the campus is generated primarily from coal (39%) and natural gas (24%). Extraction of these natural resources has significant environmental impacts, and the combustion of them causes pollution. Reduction in the use of fossil fuels is a core component of CSUN’s commitment to sustainability. This reduction can be achieved in three ways – by conservation, efficiency, and use of renewables. The first two of these result in cost savings to the campus, and the third can also pay off economically over the long term.
CSUN has developed a Climate Action Plan as well as a Strategic Energy Management Plan that both have sections that focus on our making our campus buildings more efficient. These plans can be found on CSUN's Sustainability website.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Buildings plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Improve means to measure, report and communicate energy consumption at a building/unit level
2. Improve physical infrastructure to save energy through efficiency and conservation measures
3. Increase energy-related education and outreach to students, faculty and staff, and
implement program to change behavior
4. Increase energy supplied from renewable and clean sources
5. Establish and implement strict building standards for new construction


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Buildings plan(s):

Facilities Planning, Design and Construction is responsible for new construction. Physical Plant Management is responsible for monitoring and reducing our campus' energy consumption.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Dining Services/Food:

CSUN’s goal is to provide sustainable food choices that are healthy and delicious in its on campus food service locations. There are six University Corporation (TUC)-run food service locations (The Marketplace, The Arbor Grill, Geronimo’s, The Orange Grove, The Pub, and the Campus to Go delivery service), five convenience stores (The Edge, The Arbor Grill Convenience Store, West Side Store, La Tienda, and Mercantile Exchange), six Freudian Sip coffee shop locations, and three franchised food service outlets (Burger King, Juice it Up, and Subway). The food service outlets offer a wide variety of food that are delivered in many forms and offer a wide range of possibilities to pursue more sustainable food choices.
CSUN has established 10 main strategies to move our Dining Services towards a more sustainable operations. These strategies can be found in the CSUN Sustainability Plan under the Dining Services Section.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Dining Services/Food plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Increase campus food sources that are sustainable
2. Increase the availability of fresh, healthy vegetarian/vegan options on campus
3. Provide nutrition and sustainability information for foods from campus food services.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Dining Services/Food plan(s):

Dining Services Working Group and The University Corporation


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Energy:

Energy use is the single largest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions from the United States, accounting for some 80% of total emissions. Only 10% of electricity generation in the U.S. is from renewable sources, and only 7% of total energy used comes from renewables. Electricity distributed by Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to the campus is generated primarily from coal (39%) and natural gas (24%). Extraction of these natural resources has significant environmental impacts, and the combustion of them causes pollution. Reduction in the use of fossil fuels is a core component of CSUN’s commitment to sustainability. This reduction can be achieved in three ways – by conservation, efficiency, and use of renewables. The first two of these result in cost savings to the campus, and the third can also pay off economically over the long term.
CSUN has developed a Climate Action Plan as well as a Strategic Energy Management Plan that both have sections that focus on our making our campus more energy efficient. These plans can be found on CSUN's Sustainability website.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Energy plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Improve means to measure, report and communicate energy consumption at a building/unit level
2. Improve physical infrastructure to save energy through efficiency and conservation measures
3. Increase energy-related education and outreach to students, faculty and staff, and
implement program to change behavior
4. Increase energy supplied from renewable and clean sources
5. Establish and implement strict building standards for new construction


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Energy plan(s):

Facilities Planning, Design and Construction is responsible for new construction. Physical Plant Management is responsible for monitoring and reducing our campus' energy consumption.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Grounds:

According to the CSU Sustainability Policy that went into affect in May of 2014,
"All CSU campuses will pursue water resource conservation to reduce water consumption by 10 percent by 2016, and 20 percent by 2020 including such steps to develop sustainable landscaping, install controls to optimize irrigation water use, reduce water usage in restrooms and showers, and promote the use of reclaimed/recycled water. In the event of a declaration of drought, the CSU will cooperate with the state, city, and county governments to the greatest extent possible to reduce water use. (78-; 88-Adopt; 01-No Change; 04-No Change; 14-Revise)"


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Grounds plan(s):

The University has completed a Water Action Plan that will be used to help reduce water consumption on campus and meet the mandated goals. CSUN has made tremendous efforts to conserve water over the past couple of years. Recently, some of the most impactful projects are stemming from our Grounds Department. Our main focus areas have been to remove turf and replant with native drought tolerant vegetation, upgrade our irrigation system, pilot new water conservation technologies.


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Grounds plan(s):

Facilities Planning, Design and Construction as well as Physical Plant Management.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Purchasing:

CSU Northridge spends a substantial amount of money on goods each year as part of its everyday operations including almost $1 million a year in office supplies alone. This purchasing power can be utilized to help build a sustainable economy when the triple bottom line is considered with each purchase made. CSUN seeks to reduce the significant impacts of its consumption by reducing the amount of total products purchased and increasing sustainable products purchased.
CSUN has established several main strategies to shift our purchasing habits towards more sustainable products and vendors. These strategies can be found in the CSUN Sustainability Plan under the Purchasing Section.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Purchasing plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Reduce overall product consumption
2. Increase the use of sustainable products
3. Increased awareness regarding sustainable purchasing and consumption


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Purchasing plan(s):

Purchasing and Consumption Working Group and CSUN's Purchasing Department.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Transportation:

According to the CSU Sustainability Policy that went into affect in May of 2014,
"The CSU will encourage and promote the use of alternative transportation and/or alternative fuels to reduce GHG emissions related to university associated transportation, including commuter and business travel. (14-New)"
In addition to the CSU Sustainability Policy, there are extensive plans for Transportation outlined in CSUN's Climate Action Plan.


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Transportation plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Reduce total number of commuting miles
2. Reduce use of single occupancy vehicles for commuting
3. Reduce emissions associated with vehicle use on campus


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Transportation plan(s):

Transportation Working Group and CSUN's Parking and Transportation Department.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Waste:

Eduction of CSUN’s waste is necessary to conserve valuable natural resources, reduce environmental pollution and reduce negative social impacts. As landfills fill up it is imperative that CSUN implement strategies to significantly reduce the volume of its waste. Reductions will ultimately result in a positive economic gain for the campus once procedures are in place.
CSUN has established several main strategies to shift help reduce waste and increase our diversion rate. These strategies can be found in the CSUN Sustainability Plan under the Waste and Materials Management Section.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Waste plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Reduction of total waste generated by the campus (including landfill, recycling, and other disposal methods)
2. Increase diversion of wastes from landfills
3. Increased awareness of waste, recycling and related issues
4. Improve collection and access of waste related data and information


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Waste plan(s):

Waste and Materials Management Working Group, Facilities Planning, Design and Construction as well as Physical Plant Management.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Water:

CSUN is located in a region that is characterized by an insufficient supply of local water to serve its population.
CSUN’s commitment is to be a good steward of water resources, and to conserve wherever we can.
CSUN has several strategies outlined in both our Sustainability Plan as well as our campus Water Action Plan that will help us reduce and conserve water.

+ Date Revised: March 30, 2016

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Water plan(s):

Strategies:
1. Improve conservation practices and reduce water consumption
2. Improve data collection, management and analysis
3. Increase awareness of water as a valuable resource and educate on water conservation principles


Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Water plan(s):

Water Working Group, Facilities Planning, Design and Construction as well as Physical Plant Management.


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance Diversity and Affordability:
---

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Diversity and Affordability plan(s):
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Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Diversity and Affordability plan(s):
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A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Health, Wellbeing and Work:
---

The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Health, Wellbeing and Work plan(s):
---

Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Health, Wellbeing and Work plan(s):
---

A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in Investment:

The California State University as a system became a signatory to the Global Investor Statement on Climate Change. Consistent with our fiduciary responsibilities, this statement includes a broad range of commitments to address climate risks and opportunities. T


The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the Investment plan(s):
Accountable parties, offices or departments for the Investment plan(s):

CSU Chancellors Office


A brief description of the plan(s) to advance sustainability in other areas:
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The measurable objectives, strategies and timeframes included in the other plan(s):
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Accountable parties, offices or departments for the other plan(s):
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The institution’s definition of sustainability:
---

Does the institution’s strategic plan or equivalent guiding document include sustainability at a high level?:
Yes

A brief description of how the institution’s strategic plan or equivalent guiding document addresses sustainability:

Sustainability is one of the University 7 Priorities:

Sustainability
A focus on sustainability achieves cost savings, represents responsible stewardship of the university’s physical resources, and prepares knowledgeable graduates who will also be leaders and stewards of the earth’s resources. California State University, Northridge is already a leader with sustainable buildings, efficient practices, reduced energy and water usage, and the generation and use of alternative energy. Further, the university’s focus on sustainability promotes educational experiences for students.

Consider and implement as appropriate recommendations of the campus sustainability plan draft submitted by the Institute for Sustainability, including enhanced curricular offerings.
Continue to advance sustainable and green practices with regard to facilities design and utilization, facilities and grounds maintenance, and business processes, thereby reducing waste and energy consumption.
Continue to move paper-based processes online.


The website URL where information about the institution’s sustainability planning is available:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.