Santa Clara University

sustainability at scu

SCU Sustainability Assessment 2007

The 2007 Sustainability Assessment for Santa Clara University is complete. Download the pdf to learn about the University's baseline data for fossil fuel use, recycling and waste production, use and disposal of toxic chemicals, and consumption of water.

Executive Summary
The Santa Clara University Sustainability Assessment, completed by SCU undergraduates working with the University sustainability program, was designed to assemble baseline data regarding University fuel use, water consumption, waste production, and use of toxic chemicals. This summary highlights important information in the University’s first sustainability review.
Download the Sustainability Assessment for 2007.
  • undefinedFossil Fuels

    • Facilities purchases and distributes roughly 22,000 gallons of gasoline, 1,000 gallons of diesel fuel, 400 gallons of motor oil, and over 1,443,000 Therms of natural gas annually.
    • Since 2000, there has been a 27 percent increase in campus building area but only a 3 percent increase in total energy consumption. The new Learning Commons and Library is almost twice the size of Orradre Library but is expected to run on the same amount of energy.
    • Roughly 30 percent of University energy savings prior to 2006 were from lighting retrofits since 1997.
    • Father Locatelli has signed the American College & University Presidents Climate Commitment, pledging to develop a plan to achieve campus climate neutrality.
    • SCU has committed to reduce CO2 emissions 20 percent below 1997 levels by 2010. In FY 2006, annual CO2 emissions were 18,551 tons, requiring a 34 percent decrease of present emissions.
    • SCU funds 8,040 megawatt-hours of renewable energy—equivalent to the annual output of two and a half large-scale wind turbines.
  • undefinedWaste and Recycling

    • In FY 2006, more than 25 percent of all waste was recycled at SCU. The University recycles plastic, glass, metal, aluminum cans, mixed paper, and corrugated cardboard.
    • Campus move-out in 2005 produced 25.74 tons of waste and two unweighed 40-yard bins provided by the City of Santa Clara. In 2006, waste totaled 29.16 tons and four 40-yard City bins.
    • During move-out 2007, a waste diversion campaign collected more than seven tons of items for Goodwill Industries of Silicon Valley. The GREEN Club collected over 100 residence hall carpets for reuse and more than 200 textbooks were donated to Better World Books.
    • A team of students will analyze food waste streams in the Benson Cafeteria and will work with Dining Services to develop an effective on-site composting system.
    • The Recycling Intern will increase campus efforts to reduce contamination and increase waste diversion.
  • undefinedChemicals

    • The biology department minimizes laboratory waste and reuses materials as much as possible. They are the first department to compile a complete inventory of chemicals in their possession.
    • The chemistry department has made dramatic changes to their laboratory exercises including waste reduction, minimization of toxics, and use of “greener reagents,” resulting in increased student safety, cost savings, and reduced environmental impacts.
    • The majority of chemicals used by the janitorial staff are Green Seal-certified.
    • Toxic chemicals on campus are disposed of by All Chemical Disposal, a company specializing in the proper disposal of hazardous chemicals.
    • It is expected that each department will create a centralized chemical inventory to include all chemicals used by that department. These inventories will allow for better tracking of chemicals to increase efficient use of chemicals.
  • undefinedWater

    • SCU draws water from the Santa Clara Valley Water District, the City of Santa Clara, and South Bay Water Recycling.
    • More than 75 percent of landscaping is watered with reclaimed water.
    • Over 160 Falcon Waterfree Urinals have been installed throughout campus. Falcon Waterfree literature estimates that each urinal saves 40,000 gallons per year.
    • About 90 percent of residence hall showers are equipped with low-flow shower heads which use 2.5 gallons of water per minute.