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  • AASHE-STARS

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 67.06
Liaison Allie Schwartz
Submission Date April 14, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Columbia University
EN-4: Outreach Materials and Publications

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Allie Schwartz
Assistant Manager
Environmental Stewardship
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution produce the following outreach materials and/or publications that foster sustainability learning and knowledge? :
Yes or No
A central sustainability website that consolidates information about the institution’s sustainability efforts Yes
A sustainability newsletter Yes
Social media platforms that focus specifically on campus sustainability Yes
A vehicle to publish and disseminate student research on sustainability Yes
Building signage that highlights green building features Yes
Food service area signage and/or brochures that include information about sustainable food systems Yes
Signage on the grounds about sustainable groundskeeping and/or landscaping strategies employed No
A sustainability walking map or tour Yes
A guide for commuters about how to use alternative methods of transportation Yes
Navigation and educational tools for bicyclists and pedestrians Yes
A guide for green living and incorporating sustainability into the residential experience Yes
Regular coverage of sustainability in the main student newspaper, either through a regular column or a reporter assigned to the sustainability beat Yes
Other sustainability publications or outreach materials not covered above Yes

A brief description of the central sustainability website:

Environmental Stewardship maintains a central sustainability website the collects information, links to relevant pages at the University, and posts environmental stories, happenings, and events at the University. Additionally, the central University events calendar is kept up-to- date with environmentally related events and activities.
The central sustainability website, www.environment.columbia.edu serves as the main hub of all things sustainability for the University. The site features a scrolling climate news feed, as well as an area for news/highlights of sustainability initiatives going on around the campus, Green Fund project updates, pilot project updates, as well as successes to be shared. The site also features a comprehensive recycling education page, where students/staff/faculty can learn where to throw various items based on the NYC recycling rules, and where specifically at Columbia. The site features games to encourage participation in the University recycling program. The site also features campus upgrades in order to create more efficient energy use, as well as a comprehensive Transportation Demand Management page for those commuting to and from campus.


The website URL for the central sustainability website:
A brief description of the sustainability newsletter:

"Sustainable Columbia" is a newsletter that comes out 2-3 times per year from the University's Senior Executive Vice President, Robert Kasdin. The newsletter features highlights from all campuses and provides a high-level overview of current initiatives, awards and recognition, with the option to read on if interested. This newsletter reaches every person at the University.


The website URL for the sustainability newsletter:
A brief description of the social media platforms that focus specifically on campus sustainability:

There is an extensive social media presence for Environmental Stewardship at Columbia University. Currently, there are extremely active Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages, as well as a Youtube channel that features various videos made by the office. Additionally, there is an online real-time sustainability dashboard that displays energy usage from the Columbia undergraduate residence halls.


The website URL of the primary social media platform that focuses on sustainability:
A brief description of the vehicle to publish and disseminate student research on sustainability:

The Earth Institute holds a Student Research Showcase for research specifically in the areas of the environment and sustainable development. Students discuss their unique research experiences of working to understand and solve pressing environmental and sustainable development issues. All of the projects are conducted by students who have received support, guidance or funding through an Earth Institute affiliated education or student program including a travel grant, internship or research assistant ship from the Institute.


The website URL for the vehicle to publish and disseminate student research on sustainability:
A brief description of building signage that highlights green building features :

Every undergraduate residence hall has a flat screen located in the lobby, which highlights important green initiatives like "Green Monday", as well as updates during any energy challenges. The messaging also encourages students to use the stairs instead of the elevator, and to shut their lights when not in use. In the coming LEED-rated Manhattanville Mind Brain and Behavior building, there will be flatscreens that display the cutting-edge green features of the new building.


The website URL for building signage that highlights green building features :
A brief description of food service area signage and/or brochures that include information about sustainable food systems:

There are flat screens monitors located outside the entrance to John Jay Dining Hall that inform students as they wait in line about sustainability initiatives. Additionally there are signs at food stations and information on the Dining website about sustainable food systems, local, organic, gluten-free, vegetarian, and vegan offerings, which now coordinate with the Green Monday campaign.


The website URL for food service area signage and/or brochures that include information about sustainable food systems:
A brief description of signage on the grounds about sustainable groundskeeping and/or landscaping strategies:

As Integrated Pest Management is employed, appropriate information and signs are displayed when needed. http://neighbors.columbia.edu/pages/manplanning/presentations/pest-control.pdf


The website URL for signage on the grounds about sustainable groundskeeping and/or landscaping strategies:
A brief description of the sustainability walking map or tour:

Columbia offers a Sustainable Gardens Tour of the Morningside Campus that details the plants and greenscaping used by the University.


The website URL of the sustainability walking map or tour:
A brief description of the guide for commuters about how to use alternative methods of transportation:

The transportation website lists many alternative transportation options to campus including by subway, train, bus, campus shuttle, and biking. Additionally, there is a brand new Transportation Demand Management website that helps manage traffic to and from all campuses.
http://environment.columbia.edu/transportation-demand-management


The website URL for the guide for commuters about how to use alternative methods of transportation:
A brief description of the navigation and educational tools for bicyclists and pedestrians:

The new Transporation Demand Management page has many tools for bicyclists.
http://environment.columbia.edu/transportation-demand-management


The website URL for navigation and educational tools for bicyclists and pedestrians:
A brief description of the guide for green living and incorporating sustainability into the residential experience:

The Guide to Green Living is a guide written by Columbia students, for Columbia students and is hosted on the Housing website. New incoming residential students are directed to the guide for eco living tips.


The website URL for the guide for green living and incorporating sustainability into the residential experience:
A brief description of regular coverage of sustainability in the main student newspaper, either through a regular column or a reporter assigned to the sustainability beat:

Sustainability activities and initiatives are reported on in the Spectator on a regular basis.


The website URL for regular coverage of sustainability in the main student newspaper, either through a regular column or a reporter assigned to the sustainability beat:
A brief description of another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above (1st material):

Consilience which is Columbia University’s Journal of Sustainable Development. Consilience is published twice a year once each semester in the Fall and Spring. Briefings are added throughout the year to address current topics. It is run and managed by Columbia students in conjunction with a Faculty Board (includes Jeff Sachs, Michael Gerard and Steve Cohen amongst others) who desired to build a global, online publication dedicated to the promotion of interdisciplinary dialogue and solution-oriented research on sustainable development amongst students, professors and practitioners.


The website URL for this material (1st material):
Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (2nd material):
Yes

A brief description of this material (2nd material):

The Record regularly reports on Columbia sustainability news.


The website URL for this material (2nd material):
Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (3rd material):
Yes

A brief description of this material (3rd material):

Columbia Magazine regularly reports on Columbia sustainability news.


The website URL for this material (3rd material):
Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (4th material):
Yes

A brief description of this material (4th material):

The Earth Institute publishes a regular e-update that highlights news from the institute's research centers and features events and student activities.


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Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (5th material):
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Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (6th material):
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Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (7th material):
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Does the institution produce another sustainability publication or outreach material not covered above? (8th material):
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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.