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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 Silver
Overall Score 57.22
Liaison Roxane Beigel-Coryell
Submission Date June 30, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Southern Oregon University
OP-10: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Roxane Beigel-Coryell
Sustainability & Recycling Coordinator
Facilities Management & Planning
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of the legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance:

SOU’s Ashland Campus is settled in the foothills of the Siskiyou mountain range and our region is recognized as a global biodiversity hotspot. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature labeled it as an Area of Global Botanical Significance. Our campus is a certified wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. There are currently eight large scale designated pollinator habitat areas on campus, four of which are displayed and signed as Xerces Society Pollinator Habitats. SOU’s Roca Creek area is designated as a pesticide free zone and used as an educationally, protected riparian site and is a “region of conservation importance”. There are over 20 mycologically inoculated logs on campus in sites identified for biodiversity and the SOU Farm: A Center For Sustainability, contains a designated wetland.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species (including migratory species) with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodologies used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas (including most recent year assessed) and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

Professional visual assessment in connection with the use of a dichotomous key was used to identify the trees on campus. The environmentally sensitive wetland area on the Ashland campus was inspected by the Department of State Lands. SOU is committed to protecting critical wildlife and their habitat now and in the future. The SOU Tree Advisory Council oversees the protection of the trees on campus through the use of the SOU Campus Tree Care Plan.


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

The following species of tree have been positively identified on the SOU Ashland Campus by multiple International Society of Arborist (ISA) certified arborists. These trees are all listed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature as either Near Threatened, Vulnerable, or Endangered.

Cupressus bakeri - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/34047/0 Vulnerable

Metasequoia glyptostroboides - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/32317/0 Endangered

Sequoia sempervirens - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/34051/0 Endangered

Sequoiadendron giganteum - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/34023/0 Endangered

Chamaecyparis lawsoniana - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/34004/0 Near Threatened

Chamaecyparis obtusa - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/42212/0 Near Threatened

Abies pinsapo - http://www.iucnredlist.org/details/42295/0 Endangered


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

Every year the SOU Landscape Department prioritizes tree selections based on locally grown, environmentally sustainable, and critical species for tree replacements and new plantings. In 2014 the Landscape Department planted 18 trees from the vulnerable, near threatened, threatened, or endangered tree list. We also perform visual tree health assessments annually and dedicate funds to tree preservation.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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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.