Gri and Sustainability Reporting

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ERS 490 / 475 Final

Campus Sustainability: Sustainability Assessment Framework at the University of Waterloo


By Crystal Legacy ID# 99071214 Fall 2003 / Winter 2004

For Susan Wismer

Executive Summary

The University of Waterloo (UW) has made ample progress over the past ten years in the field of campus sustainability. This progress is evident through the initiation of the WATgreen Advisory Committee, the Environment and Resource Studies Greening the Campus Course (ERS 250) and the student-driven University of Waterloo Sustainability Project (UWSP), all of which have allowed UW to enhance the socio-economic and biophysical sustainability of the university campus. This report proposes that the University of Waterloo adopt a Campus Sustainability Assessment Framework (CSAF) complete with socio-economic and biophysical indicators that can be used to quantitatively and qualitatively measure and monitor campus sustainability at UW. The question that this research paper explores is: how can a Campus Sustainability Assessment Framework be applied at the University of Waterloo? The objectives of this project include: • Determining how a sustainability assessment framework can be applied at UW. • Understanding the role that WATgreen, UWSP, ERS 250 course and other relevant courses can play in gathering and analysing data for a campus sustainability assessment framework. • Understanding what the primary barriers will be in implementing this project. • Preparing a guide that will direct students in the ERS “Greening the Campus” course and UWSP volunteers on how to undertake the data gathering and synthesis of information for the assessment. Exploration into this question found that the assessment framework proposed can most effectively be applied at UW through a bottom-up approach, which suggests that students take the lead in implementing the framework. The student volunteers in UWSP will act as the coordinating body. They...