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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 56.83
Liaison Liz Davey
Submission Date Oct. 13, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Tulane University
IN-1: Innovation 1

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Liz Davey
Director
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Title or keywords related to the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Tulane University Grand Challenge: Water Innovations

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome :

Tulane University has sponsored a $1 million prize to be awarded to the team or individual that creates a significant and workable solution to hypoxia, which causes "dead zones" in the Gulf of Mexico and other fragile coastal and inland lake ecosystems throughout the world. As of 2014, the University finalized the competition details and began inviting entrepreneurs, researchers and inventors worldwide to participate in the prize competition. This competition is based on the assertion that a market based solution which rewards innovation and risk taking has the potential to create a sustainable and significant new technology for addressing hypoxia.

Hypoxia occurs when excess nutrients flow from rivers to near-shore areas, depleting the oxygen required to support life. This can result in severe impairment of near-shore fisheries, consequently destabilizing the businesses, families and communities sustained by those fisheries. Further, nutrient enrichment can jeopardize the future of estuaries and coastal wetlands that depend on freshwater and sediment delivery for stability and persistence. In short, clean water is critical to the ecological, cultural and economic well-being of Louisiana, the nation and the world.

Addressing hypoxia is a grand challenge because solutions must meet a suite of simultaneous and sometimes conflicting needs – from protecting water resources and near-shore ecosystems to ensuring the capacity and vitality of agricultural productivity.


A brief description of any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation (if not reported above):
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A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise:
Which of the following STARS subcategories does the innovation most closely relate to? (Select all that apply up to a maximum of 5):
Yes or No
Curriculum No
Research Yes
Campus Engagement No
Public Engagement Yes
Air & Climate No
Buildings No
Dining Services No
Energy No
Grounds No
Purchasing No
Transportation No
Waste No
Water Yes
Coordination, Planning & Governance Yes
Diversity & Affordability No
Health, Wellbeing & Work No
Investment No

Other topic(s) that the innovation relates to that are not listed above:
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The website URL where information about the innovation 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.