UCSF Sustainability Stories

Deborah Fleischer, Green Impact, February 2013

UC’s 2012 Annual Report on Sustainable Practices Highlights UCSF

The University of California (UC) 2012 Annual Report on Sustainable Practices was released in January, providing an overview of UC’s green accomplishments.  The report highlights the main sustainability achievements for 2012, as well as external recognition, faculty, staff, and student collaboration, the California Higher Education Sustainability Conference, and training programs.  The report specifically highlights some of the UCSF Medical Center’s achievements, which are summarized below.

UC-Wide Achievements

In 2012, the University continued to be recognized in the top tiers of national campus sustainability rankings evidenced by twenty national and state sustainability awards. The San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Davis medical centers each received a national award for their sustainability practices. The University received media acclaim in local and regional newspapers, national publications such as Forbes, and in television and radio news broadcasts.

Davis hosted the 11th annual California Higher Education Sustainability Conference, with nearly 1000 faculty, staff, and student participants. UC also partnered with the California State University system to offer a total of 730 persondays of energy efficiency and green building training in 2012, including certification trainings for building operators and energy managers.

UC has the most LEED building certifications of any university in the country. Twenty-seven new certifications were awarded in 2012, bringing the University total to 114 LEED certifications which include new construction, renovations, and maintenance and operations categories.

UCSF Medical Center 2012 Achievements

In 2012, five UC medical centers implemented numerous cost-saving sustainability initiatives. “Across all medical centers, there is an increased focus on reusable materials that are reprocessed between each use cycle, in lieu of disposable materials,” stated the report.

UCSF Medical Center’s program to reprocess single-use medical devices realized $670,000 in cost savings in FY 11-12, diverting over 14 tons of waste in their effort to reach the Policy’s waste reduction goals while simultaneously cutting costs. Other successful waste reduction initiatives at the UCSF Medical Center highlighted include implementation of in-patient room recycling, onsite steam sterilization of medical waste, achieving 14 percent sustainable food spend in FY 2011‐12, and successfully composting 90 percent of all patient and retail food waste.

The Medical Center also received its 4th Practice GreenHealth Award.

Overview of Other Achievements

In 2012, the campus and medical center had over one million square feet of LEED certified space, certified 20 LivingGreen Offices, launched the LivingGreen Lab and LivingGreen Event certificates, and reached a 63 percent solid waste diversion rate.  Energy efficiency projects in campus and medical center buildings avoided over $1 milion in costs last year.  The diagram below presents a great overview of UCSF’s green achievements to date.

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Moving Forward

As we move into 2013, there is more for UCSF to do!  Below are a few ideas for how you can do your part.