U Texas Austin Reduces Irrigation Usage by 66%
With its automated irrigation system, installed in 2011, the university has reduced irrigation usage by 66 percent and saved 90 to 100 million gallons of water. The university also saves water through xeriscaping and a campus chilling station that is connected to the City of Austin’s reclaimed water system.
Carnegie Mellon U Installs Evive Water Station on Campus
(U.S.): The university has entered a contract with Evive Station to find an efficient and cost-effective way of reducing disposable water bottles on campus. Evive Station has installed a machine on campus that allows users to sanitize and refill their reusable bottles.
EPA Announces Campus RainWorks Challenge Winners
(U.S.): The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced the four winners of the Campus RainWorks Challenge, a new design challenge created to inspire the next generation of landscape architects, planners and engineers to develop innovative green infrastructure systems that reduce stormwater pollution and support sustainable communities. Winners include the University of Florida Gainesville, University of Arizona, Illinois Institute of Technology, and the Missouri University of Science and Technology.
Indiana U Purdue U Indianapolis Installs Hydration Stations
(U.S.): In an effort to reduce the number of plastic water bottles on campus, the university has installed 35 hydration stations in the past three years to refill reusable bottles. The hydration stations have been particularly well-received in the School of Dentistry.
Southern Oregon U to Offset 100 Percent of its Water Use
In partnership with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation (BEF), the university announced that it will offset 100 percent of its water use through a five-year commitment to BEF’s Water Restoration Certificate program. Funded through a student-led green fund, the university will restore approximately 80 million gallons of water per year to the Klamath River Basin.
U Texas Austin Uses Reclaimed Water for Cooling Systems
A new system of pipes has been installed to link the university’s chilling stations with Austin Water’s reclaimed water system. The initiative, aimed to save water and increase system efficiency, will allow campus buildings to use filtered wastewater instead of potable water for cooling systems.
Trinity U Installs Water Bottle Refilling Stations
(U.S.): The university has installed 18 water bottle filling stations in both academic buildings and residence halls. The project received funding from the campus administration and Association of Student Representatives.
U California Santa Barbara Approves Water Action Plan
(U.S.): The university has approved a Water Action Plan. This water guidance document identifies historic and current water use and provides water conservation recommendations on a 15-year planning horizon. The plan was designed and produced by six graduate students in collaboration with various stakeholders from the university, as well as local, regional, and national water conservation stakeholders.
Michigan State U Offers Boxed Water
The university has added its single-serve, boxed water product to its main campus offerings. Students will have the option to purchase Boxed Water at the Student Union and in three campus residence halls. The University partnered with Boxed Water is Better because of the company’s focus on sustainability, environmental awareness and its distinct package design.
U California Santa Cruz Constructs Closed-Looped Car Wash
(U.S.): The university has constructed a pressure washing system supplied by a closed-loop water recycling system to prevent contaminating the sewer or bay. Water is cycled through the system using microbes to eat and digest contaminants such as oil. The system helps to locate and eliminate oil leaks that find their way onto roads while keeping fleet vehicles clean using less water in the process.
Auburn U Installs Rainwater Catchment System
(U.S.): In an effort to minimize stormwater runoff, the university’s Landscape Services Department has installed a cistern around a campus building. The water collected from the roof run-off will be sent to a holding tank and then used for watering a nearby garden.
Texas A&M U Installs Green Roof
A section of a campus building’s rooftop has been transformed into a green roof with succulents, grasses and a weather station by an interdisciplinary group of students in phase one of a three-year research initiative. The project also calls for students to design and build a living wall, a vegetated wall that achieves benefits similar to green roofs and investigate its performance.
U Illinois Debuts Green Roof
Installed atop the university’s Conference Center, the 3,000-square-foot green roof will help insulate the building, absorb and filter rainwater, improve air quality and prevent roof deterioration. The project received a $33,000 grant from the Illinois Environmental Grant Program for Stormwater Management.
Catholic U Installs Green Roof
The university has installed its third green roof on campus as part of the university’s efforts to foster sustainability and environmental stewardship. The 1,488-square-foot installation will reduce stormwater run-off and prevent UV radiation and extreme temperatures from degrading the underlying roof membrane.
Purdue U Dedicates Green Roof Laboratory
After raising more than $125,000 for the project, School of Civil Engineering students have unveiled a new green roof laboratory to celebrate the school’s 125th anniversary. Featuring soil and plant media, sensors to measure energy, and a weather station, the roof will provide a lab space to work on sustainability and green initiatives. The School of Civil Engineering, industrial partners, alumni and sustainability funds covered the additional $900,000 cost.
Syracuse U Monitors Green Roof
A civil engineering professor and a team of students have installed monitoring equipment on a rooftop garden that will gather data and show how effective the 1.5-acre roof system is at stemming stormwater runoff. Once the equipment is established, real-time data will be available on a website designed to allow teachers to use the information in their classrooms.
U Chicago Develops Green Roof Map
Interns with the university’s Environment, Agriculture and Food Group, along with the City of Chicago, Green Roofs for Healthy Cities and Loyola University’s Office of Sustainability, have developed the Chicago Campus Green Roofs Tool. The interactive mapping application features campus green roof locations, photos, performance data and information on public accessibility.
Indiana U Competition Saves 7 M Gallons of Water
In its first three weeks, the university’s Million Gallon Challenge has saved 7.3 million gallons of water. The campus launched the challenge to not only reduce water usage on campus but also raise awareness of the City of Bloomington's emergency water restriction order.
Portland State U Students Install Green Roof
Students have installed a 3,000-square-foot green roof as part of a living laboratory for civil and environmental engineering classes. Research will be conducted on the differences between the native and non-native plants.
Gannon U Installs 2 Green Roofs
Two green roofs consisting of 67 plants of seven varieties will be installed on Zurn Science Center as a senior gift from the university’s class of 2012. Last year the class participated in fundraising campaigns that raised $1,700 to help fund the project.
Northeast Wisconsin Technical College Debuts Green Roof
Installed on the student commons building, the new 2,500-square-foot green roof will provide stormwater management and increase insulation. The roof, situated next to two variations of traditional roofs, will provide an opportunity to compare energy savings and test benefit claims. In the future, the college also hopes to install a cistern to collect rainwater to replace the current sprinkler system.
Texas State U San Marcos Announces New Water, Environment Center
The university's planned $10 million expansion of its water and environmental quality research and teaching program will include a new Meadows Center for Water and the Environment. The initiative will be funded by a $1 million gift from the Meadows Foundation, additional endowment gifts during the next few years totaling $5 million, and state funds earmarked for emerging research universities.
U Cincinnati Installs Green Roof
Installed atop the College of Nursing’s Procter Hall, the green roof contains drought resistant plants that will help achieve energy savings, sound insulation and stormwater run-off reduction.
Hamline U Installs Green Roof
Installed atop the university’s new Anderson Center, the 1,800-square-foot LiveRoof Hybrid Green Roof system will help achieve energy savings, sound insulation and stormwater run-off reduction.
Georgia Tech Installs Low-Flow Plumbing Fixtures
In an effort to conserve water and reduce utility costs, the institute’s Energy Conservation team has completed a urinal replacement project. With 308 automatic, low-flow urinals now in several older buildings on campus, the institute expects to save up to 5,300 gallons of water per day and savings of up to $54,000 annually.
Queen’s U Launches Water Initiative
Led by the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science's Department of Civil Engineering, this 10-year water initiative is bringing researchers and industry partners together to expand research and provide hands-on learning experiences for graduate and undergraduate students. The project aims to raise awareness of the impact of industrial development and agriculture on watershed health and water supplies.
U Wisconsin System Launches Water Technology Initiative
In partnership with the Milwaukee Water Council, the University of Wisconsin System's water technology project will tap the specific strengths of its five campuses to integrate STEM education and create new approaches to the sustainable use of water systems. The initiative will receive ongoing guidance from the Business-Higher Education Forum, an organization working to close gaps between higher education and the professional workforce.
U Texas Austin Debuts Water-Efficient Irrigation System
To address costly issues of water conservation, as well as breaks and inadequacies in the prior watering system, the university has completed a central irrigation system. The system has the ability to track gallon usage, detect breaks, keep track of rainfall and track water evaporation as it happens. It can be operated and monitored from a single computer, a smartphone or a remote control. Since its completion in April, the university has saved 3.8 million gallons of water.
William Peace U Launches Rainwater Harvesting Project
The university's Rainwater Harvesting System Clean Water Management Trust Fund Grant Project, a $710,000 campus-wide water conservation program, includes a cistern that will supply 90 percent of the irrigation water needed for on-campus use. The university will also install new showerheads and sink aerators.
Texas A&M U Addresses State Water Conservation Needs
The university has announced the formation of a new Water Conservation and Technology Center that will work to address Texas’ long-term water development needs. The center will focus on water conservation, water reuse, groundwater desalination and energy development.
Loyola U Chicago Announces Bottled Water Ban
The university has announced that bottled water will no longer be sold on campus starting in 2013. The decision follows a year-long educational campaign, "UnCap Loyola," which focused on local water privatization and fair access to water on a global level.
Delta College Unveils Interpretive Stormwater Management Signage
With a grant from Bay Area Community Foundation, the signs provide an introduction to the campus' redesigned watercourse, natural filtration system and habitat restoration efforts. Students and visitors can now learn about the project materials and methods selected to reduce environmental impact and support the local economy.
Victoria U Pilots Program to Convert Waste Heat for Distillation
(Australia): Results from the Institute for Sustainability and Innovation's three-month trial operation demonstrate the potential for a membrane distillation process using waste heat from heavy industry to desalinate saline effluent. The system produced high-quality water without an increase in greenhouse gas emissions.
Trinity U Uses Reclaimed Water for Plumbing
In an effort to conserve water, Trinity University (Texas) has installed new toilets that use reclaimed water. The system uses condensate captured from the air conditioning system in the university’s Center for the Sciences and Innovation and is then treated and pumped to toilets and urinals.
U Washington Installs Rain Garden
The University of Washington has transformed a campus courtyard into a rain garden to manage stormwater runoff. The university has plans for at least three more rain gardens, two of which will be finished by summer 2012.
Temple U Highlights Water Conservation through Theater
Temple University's (PA) recent production of "Urinetown" served as a musical platform to incite a campus dialogue about water conservation. Exploring themes of water shortage and over-consumption in society, the musical was chosen to raise awareness and encourage personal responsibility for water usage.
Clarkson U to Build Stormwater Detention Pond
Clarkson University (NY) is gearing up to build a drainage system and detention pond that will manage stormwater run-off that currently floods the campus and nearby streets. With the new system, water will flow into a basin and continue into a larger pond, eventually making its way toward the existing campus wetlands. The project is expected to cost about $500,000.
Stetson U Adopts Water Conservation Theme for the Academic Year
Stetson University (FL) has adopted "water sustainability" as its theme for the 2011-2012 academic year. Stetson GREEN, a sustainable initiative program, will bring together people who have worked independently on water conservation issues to plan conservation-themed activities and projects. Efforts will include field studies, surveys on water usage, water-themed academic courses, public education, research, guest lecturers and community volunteerism focused on protecting natural water resources.
U California Merced Hosts Student Water Conservation Competition
To raises awareness and motivate students to reduce their water consumption, the University of California, Merced has launched a month-long water conservation challenge. More than 500 students in nine residence halls will compete to conserve the most water for a chance to win prizes including a $1,000 donation to a local nonprofit organization. Students can check their real-time water usage and hall rankings online.
USA Today Highlights Rise of Campus Hydration Stations
USA Today recently covered the rise of hydration station installations on campus as more colleges and universities ban the sale of bottled water. Hydration station manufacturers Elkay and Brita each report that about 150 colleges and universities have installed their refilling stations.
Antioch U New England Installs Permeable Walkways
With the aim of managing stormwater, Antioch University New England (NH) has started replacing walkways with permeable pavement. Rain and snowmelt seep down through the porous pavement into a stone base and percolate into the soil underneath. Less stormwater runs off to pollute nearby surface waters unlike conventional pavement, which sheds water. Research from the University of New Hampshire has shown that pervious pavement can eliminate the pooling of water and reduce the need for de-icing products by as much as 70 percent.
Binghamton U Announces Water Harvesting Project
Binghamton University (NY) has announced the installation of four tanks for a green water harvesting project. Two hundred thousand gallons of water will be retained for toilet flushing and to provide water for the campus cooling towers. Once the tanks are installed, the university will put in a rainwater retention system collected from parking lots and roofs. The accumulation and storing of water is planned for 2013 with the opening of its Center for Excellence.
Monmouth College Installs Rain Garden to Curb Water Pollution
Monmouth College (IL) has installed a rain garden at the front of its educational garden to help minimize water pollution. The garden features low maintenance perennial plants and is expected to help reduce stormwater runoff, recharge ground supplies, increase wildlife habitat and reduce the need to mow. To help cover the costs, the college received a $740 Illinois Rain Garden Initiative grant from the Illinois Conservation Foundation and the Illinois Department of Natural Resources’ Division of Education, in cooperation with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
Karakoram Int'l U to Save 30% Water with New Irrigation System
Facing an acute shortage of water with depleting reservoirs in the mountainous region, Karakoram International University (Pakistan) has installed a new Pop-Up Sprinkler system that is expected to save up to 30 percent of water. Ninety-five of the new water-efficient sprinklers will irrigate two acres of campus.
Raritan Valley CC Designated 'River-Friendly'
Raritan Valley Community College (NJ) has been awarded the River-Friendly certification by New Jersey Water Supply Authority for its efforts to improve local water resource quality through water quality management, water conservation, protection of wildlife habitat and outreach. The college committed to pursuing River-Friendly certification as part of its environmental stewardship agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The college has made numerous environmental improvements on campus to achieve River-Friendly certification including the installation of rain gardens, implementing an integrated pest management policy, reducing the campus’ mowed lawn area by 24 percent, training students to conduct assessments on the campus streams, and creating inventories of the campus' 289 species of flora and fauna.
U Georgia to Revive Buried Waterways
The University of Georgia has planned to revive buried waterways on campus after two centuries of construction turned the waterways into part of a 53-mile network of underground drain pipes. University planners have begun working to partially restore the creeks and improve the purity of the water in the streams. The university is also developing projects designed to reduce pollution flowing into the stream system.
U Louisville Tapped for Water-Efficient Landscaping Renovations
As part of its green infrastructure program to reduce sewage overflows from sewers, Metropolitan Sewer District (MSD) has announced a $1.5 million campus landscaping renovation at the University of Louisville (KY). Renovations will include vegetated roofs, parking lots renovated to funnel water into gravel-filled pits, a rain garden and porous brick surfacing. The projects are intended to prevent millions of dollars in flood damage and serve as an example for similar projects across the city.
Ball State U Adds Green Roof Atop Geothermal Station
Ball State University (IN) has installed about 7,000 square-feet of GreenGrid, a modular and maintenance-free plant system, on the roof of its North District Energy Station. The green roof features pallets that are made of 60 percent recycled plastic and filled with low-growing vegetation. The installation will help insulate the building and reduce the amount of rainwater that flows into the storm sewer system. The university hopes to incorporate green roofs into its strategic construction plan.
Albany State U to Revamp Water Conservation Program
Albany State University (GA) has announced plans to upgrade its water conservation program. The program was first implemented in 2007 during the last major statewide drought. It helped reduce water use on campus by 23 percent, but campus leaders are putting a renewed focus on conservation. The university has stopped washing all vehicles and will discontinue the watering of lawns.