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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 66.07
Liaison Colleen McCormick
Submission Date Feb. 25, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of California, Merced
IN-4: Innovation 4

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Leigh Bernacchi
UC Water Program Coordinator
UC Water Security and Sustainability Research Initiative
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Title or keywords related to the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
UC Water Security and Sustainability Research

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

In 2015 the University of California established the UC Water Initiative to address issues related to climate change, population growth, and changing land-cover that has radically altered the water cycle with dramatic impacts on human environmental uses of water.

The UC Water Security and Sustainability Research Initiative is focused on strategic research to build a knowledge base for developing water-resources management. UC Water brings researchers together from multiple University of California campuses.

UC Water Initiatives include:

1. UC WATER is developing innovative, quantitative water accounting and analysis methods, and introducing modern information systems into California’s aging infrastructure. Current water policy lacks salient, credible, and legitimate water information forcing policymakers to rely on century-old technology and analysis techniques.

2. UC WATER is improving our understanding of the way water flows through the natural environment, and how it is extracted, conveyed and stored in built and natural infrastructure. This initiative also contributes to research by developing understanding of landcover changes on source-water areas, and tools and techniques for better groundwater management.

3. UC WATER tightly weaves legal and policy research into our findings. Our research will help facilitate more integrated water management institutions in California and aid in the development of the capacity to adapt to 21st-century stressors.


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 five):
Yes or No
Curriculum ---
Research ---
Campus Engagement ---
Public Engagement ---
Air & Climate ---
Buildings ---
Dining Services ---
Energy ---
Grounds ---
Purchasing ---
Transportation ---
Waste ---
Water Yes
Coordination, Planning & Governance ---
Diversity & Affordability ---
Health, Wellbeing & Work ---
Investment ---

Other topic(s) that the innovation relates to that are not listed above:
---

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.