2010-2015 Progress Report

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Our Goals and Our ProgressSustainabilityProgressReport

Goal #1: Become a net-negative energy consumer, consuming less energy on campus in 2020 than in 2010, despite projected growth

Progress:  After implementing an aggressive energy reduction program, the UI is using 4% less energy than in 2010. Ten new buildings have been added to the UI campus since 2010 with no rise in energy consumption.   

Goal #2: “Green” the university’s energy portfolio, reaching 40 percent renewable energy consumption on campus by 2020.

Progress: Renewable energy use is now at 14.4 percent. Coal use has been significantly reduced through the use of biomass fuels including oat hulls, wood chips and miscanthus grass being co-fired with coal in the UI Power Plant.

Goal #3: Reach 60 percent waste diversion by 2020.

Progress: The campus has achieved 42% waste diversion as of the end of 2015. There is now recycling in every major building and almost all dining area food wastes collected for composting.

Goal #4: Achieve 10% reduction in per capita emissions of fossil fuel-produced CO2 from university-related transportation and travel

Progress: The campus has reached a 14.29 percent reduction in UI-related transportation and travel. Over 60 percent of the UI campus fleet is hybrid, electric or flex-fuel. Zipcar was introduced in 2012 and the UI became Iowa’s first Bicycle Friendly University in 2014, with a Silver designation.

Goal #5: Student success in sustainability

Progress:  The undergraduate certificate in sustainability is among the most popular certificate programs at UI.  Students have over 400 sustainability-related and focused classes to choose from and many co-curricular opportunities. Hundreds of Eco Hawks, the UI community of students, faculty and staff, are working every day to make the campus more sustainable.

Goal #6: Expand research into sustainability-related areas, special focus on water

Progress: Over $21,000,000 for sustainability-related research has been secured since 2014. Research is taking place in water quality, rural environmental health, food impact mitigation, and renewable energy policy in the UI’s cutting edge institutes and centers.

Goal #7: Build partnerships for a sustainable Iowa and respond to the needs of the green economy

Progress: Through the Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities, UI students and faculty have invested 36,000+ hours in community projects. The Tippie College of Business provides students opportunities to provide organizational consulting to ensure Iowa businesses remain competitive, as well as green!