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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 77.43
Liaison Claudia Frere-Anderson
Submission Date Oct. 14, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Washington, Seattle
OP-11: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Raymond Larson
Curator of Living Collections
UW Botanic Gardens
"---" 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 any legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance on institution owned or managed land:

The University of Washington, through the UW Botanic Gardens, manages the 230-acre Washington Park Arboretum adjacent to campus and owns the plant collections. There are nearly 4,000 accessioned taxa representing over 20,000 plants. This includes a conservation collection of 212 taxa representing 64 genera of plants that are listed as vulnerable, threatened or higher for worldwide extinction. The Arboretum contains one of the most diverse woody plant collections in North America. The UW Botanic Gardens, which manages both the Arboretum and the on-campus Center for Urban Horticulture and Union Bay Natural Areas also contains habitat for over 200 bird species. The 74-acre Union Bay Natural Area is considered the best urban birdwatching area in the state of Washington and is managed to support a diversity of bird and animal life. The UW Botanic Gardens also maintains the Miller Seed Vault, which stores seeds of 107 rare Washington species and has received 69420 accessions (seed lots).


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable 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 methodology(-ies) used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

The UW Botanic Gardens is a member institution of both Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BCGI) and the Center for Plant Conservation (CPC). We monitor and track our collections of International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) listed plants. We collaborate with international communities in ex situ conservation efforts through seed banking and tissue culture, and duplicate collections for non-regional taxa; coordinating primarily with institutions from similar climate regimes focusing on acquisition of threatened plant species, in accordance with CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora) guidelines. We work with city, county and state agencies to manage over 70 acres of environmentally sensitive areas including wetland and shoreline habitats.


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

The UW Botanic Gardens manages over 300 acres containing a variety of habitats. In the Botanic Gardens, 5.4% of the documented collection consists of plants that are vulnerable, threatened, endangered or extinct in the wild. We manage over 4 miles of shoreline adjacent to more than 70 acres of environmentally sensitive areas, which support over 200 species of resident and migratory birds. This includes the largest extant swamp in the Lake Washington watershed.


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

We have a Collections Plan, Conservation Plan, and a Union Bay Natural Area and Shoreline Management Plan that guide our management, as well as an Integrated Pest Management plan. These were developed in conjunction with other agencies and organizations that manage similar gardens, habitats and sensitive areas.


The website URL where information about the institution’s biodiversity policies and programs(s) 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.