UCI News

UC Irvine earns STARS gold rating for sustainability achievements

The new program measures and encourages responsible stewardship of Earth’s resources in all aspects of higher education.

May 29, 2013

Irvine, Calif., May 29, 2013 ­– UC Irvine has received the prestigious STARS gold rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System measures and encourages responsible stewardship of Earth’s resources in all aspects of higher education.

UC Irvine’s commitment to sustainability spans its mission of teaching, research and public service and reflects the collective actions of faculty, students and staff. The campus has been recognized for three years straight as one of Sierra magazine’s top 10 “Coolest Schools” and in 2011 earned a Second Nature Climate Leadership Award, recognizing innovative and advanced leadership in education for sustainability, climate mitigation and adaptation. It’s only the third campus in the University of California system to garner a STARS gold rating.

“This is one more affirmation of the wonderful work our students, faculty and staff do in resource conservation, transportation efficiencies, Earth-friendly business practices, and cutting-edge research on global climate change, energy, water resources, urban planning policy and more,” said UC Irvine Chancellor Michael Drake. “It’s recognition of a campuswide commitment that is unwavering.”

STARS is the only program of its kind that requires public reporting of comprehensive information related to a college’s or university’s sustainability performance. It gauged dozens of factors at UC Irvine, including education and research; operations such as dining services, transportation and waste management; planning, administration and public engagement; and innovation.

Unlike other rating or ranking systems, STARS is open to all institutions of higher education in the U.S. and Canada, and the criteria that determine its ratings are transparent and accessible. Because STARS ratings are based on credits earned, the system allows for both internal comparison and comparison with similar institutions.

“We are very proud to have achieved a STARS gold rating for our sustainability accomplishments,” said Wendell Brase, UC Irvine vice chancellor for administrative & business services. “We continue to redouble our efforts in this area and only expect them to improve over time.”

UC Irvine’s STARS submission data may be viewed at https://stars.aashe.org/institutions/university-of-california-irvine-ca/report/2013-05-24/.

About the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education: An association of colleges and universities working to create a sustainable future, AASHE provides resources, professional development and a support network that enable institutions of higher education to model and advance sustainability in everything from governance and operations to education and research. For more information, visit www.aashe.org.

About the University of California, Irvine: Founded in 1965, UCI is a top-ranked university dedicated to research, scholarship and community service. Led by Chancellor Michael Drake since 2005, UCI is among the most dynamic campuses in the University of California system, with more than 28,000 undergraduate and graduate students, 1,100 faculty and 9,400 staff. Orange County’s second-largest employer, UCI contributes an annual economic impact of $4.3 billion. For more UCI news, visit wp.communications.uci.edu.

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