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Campus Sustainability Priorities for 2016-2021

Administration, Development, and Planning

  • Improve public reporting on progress toward sustainability goals. (ADP 1.1.3, 3.2.1)
  • Increase internal understanding of sustainability best practices and awareness of campus initiatives. (ADP 1.4, 3.1; W 2.1.3)
  • Assess and enhance the campus environment to better support a high quality of life for KU students, faculty, and staff. (ADP 2.1.3, 2.2.1, 2.2.2, 2.2.4)


Curriculum and Research

  • Pursue new partnerships and resources that develop and promote the living laboratory concept and enhance learning, research, and sustainability problem-solving. (CR 1.1.1, 1.1.2, 1.2.1, 1.2.3, 3.1.2, 3.1.3, 3.2.1)
  • Expand professional development and ongoing support for KU faculty to integrate sustainability into the curriculum. (CR 2.1.1, 2.1.2, 2.1.3)
  • Grow student participation, course options, and experiential learning site partners in the Sustainability Certificate. (CR 2.2.3)
  • Showcase research related to sustainability from all levels of the campus. (CR 3.1.6)


Student Life

  • Work with campus partners to introduce students to sustainability efforts through new student marketing and experiences. (SL 1.1.1, 1.1.2)
  • Promote leadership in sustainability practices and programming through existing student groups, activities, and student living facilities. (SL 1.2.1, 1.2.2, 1.3.1, 1.3.2, 1.3.3)
  • Strengthen relationships with campus departments and organizations addressing service, equity, and inclusion. (SL 1.4.1)



  • Develop a framework for prioritizing investment in energy efficiency and conservation projects. (E 1.1.3, 1.1.4)
  • Establish a clear processes for creating an energy budget that incorporates development of the Revolving Green Loan Fund and other reinvestment strategies. (E 1.3.2, 1.3.3, 1.3.4)
  • Establish a retrocomissioning process that proactively addresses mechanical operations (E 2.1.1, 2.1.3)
  • Expand energy awareness and education programs (E 2.2.1, 2.2.2, 2.2.6)
  • Monitor renewable prices to determine when investment in solar becomes cost effective. Develop design standards for roof-top solar to be implemented when solar becomes financially viable for the university. (E 3.1.1, E 3.1.3)
  • Partner with Regents Institutions to collaboratively establish metrics for energy use and benchmarking and establish goals for conservation and the use of renewables. (E 3.2.1)


Built Environment

  • Continue to review and update existing standards for new construction and renovation to further integrate sustainable design practices that meet specific goals for development. (BE 1.1.4, 1.1.5, 1.4.3).
  • Continue to improve the planning, design and review process by engaging diverse stakeholders from early in the process. (BE 1.2.2, 1.4.1)
  • Develop a system for evaluating projects based on triple bottom line principles. (BE 1.2.3, BE 1.4.2)
  • Improve alignment of construction standards and operation and maintenance practices to maximize energy and water conservation while providing a clean and safe indoor environment. (BE 1.1.5)


Campus Grounds

  • Establish a process to review, promote, preserve and enhance elements of the campus landscape, built environment, and infrastructure that contribute to our historic and cultural heritage. (CG Goal 1)
  • Update stormwater management practices and planning to  account for anticipated changes in rainfall (fewer but more intense rainfall events) due to climate change. (CG Goal 3)



  • Identify and pursue opportunities to reduce campus waste through source reduction by evaluating and modifying procurement practices. (P 1.1.2, 1.1.4, 1.2.1, 1.2.2; W 1.1.1)
  • Develop  sustainable procurement guidelines that integrate sustainable purchasing practices into preferred product lists and vendor contracts. (P 2.1, P 3.1)
  • Develop a comprehensive supplier diversity program. (P 3.2)



  • Transition campus to a “centralized waste and recycling collection system,” providing office occupants with recycling containers and trash “mini-bins” in order to increase diversion rates, reduce contamination, and improve collection efficiency. (W 1.2.1)
  • Develop streamlined options for recycling and waste reduction at university sponsored events. (W 1.2.5)
  • Expand composting and other food waste diversion programs to include more dining venues, catering, and University sponsored events. (W 1.3.3)
  • Establish building design standards for recovery of reusable materials (W 1.5.1; BE 1.1.2)



  • Establish a multi-modal approach to transportation planning and management. (T Goal 2)
  • Increase bicycle ridership to and on campus (T Objective 2.1 and recommendations of the Campus Bicycle Plan)

Coronavirus Update

KU Recycling and KU Surplus have resumed services. As part of our efforts to reduce an on-campus presence and promote social distancing, we will continue to limit special collections that are not mission critical. For updated information on KU's response to COVID-19, visit protect.ku.edu

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