Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 64.43
Liaison Kelsey Beal
Submission Date Nov. 4, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
IN-4: Innovation 4

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Jessica Davis
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Title or keywords related to the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Climate Change Interactive Website

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:

An interactive website created by an environmental epidemiologist at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis that shows how climate change will impact Indianapolis has won a national environmental climate change competition.

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, one of the centers that make up the National Institutes of Health, awarded a first-place prize of $10,000 to Yi Wang, an assistant professor in the Richard M. Fairbanks School of Public Health.
Wang worked with public health undergraduate and graduate students, the Society of Chemical Hazard Communication, the Environmental Protection Agency's Toxic Inventory Release, and Indianapolis' Near Westside community to develop the website, titled "The Effects of Climate Change on the Future of Local Communities."

The prototype is currently designed for Indianapolis' Near Westside community, but it can easily be replicated for other communities. It will be featured in the U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit. Created by the White House, the toolkit provides scientific tools, information and expertise to help communities and their residents manage their climate-related risks and opportunities and improve resilience to extreme events.

The National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences held the Climate Change and Environmental Exposures Challenge to develop additional tools needed to identify people and places at risk from climate change-related environmental hazards.
"Climate change is likely to alter the risks posed by environmental exposures in ways that are just beginning to be explored," according to the agency's website. "By creating data visualization tools and maps that connect current science on climate change to the exposure pathways for environmental hazards, innovators can help identify areas and people at greatest risk and help to prioritize protective actions."

A brief description of any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation (if not reported above):

The website developed by Wang's team provides multiple maps of Indianapolis showing environmental hazards that will be impacted by climate change. Among them are:
• Flooding: The effect of increased precipitation on vulnerable and hazardous areas;
• Air pollution: The effect of temperature on ozone formation; and
• Extreme heat: The effect of urban heat on cardiovascular health, including stroke and heart attack during the hottest days of summer.

The maps are important not only because they show how climate change events affect existing environmental hazards in the greater Indianapolis area, but also because they make the information easy to understand for community residents and policymakers.

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise:
Which of the following STARS subcategories does the innovation most closely relate to? (Select all that apply up to a maximum of five):
Yes or No
Curriculum No
Research Yes
Campus Engagement No
Public Engagement Yes
Air & Climate Yes
Buildings No
Dining Services No
Energy No
Grounds No
Purchasing No
Transportation No
Waste No
Water Yes
Coordination, Planning & Governance No
Diversity & Affordability No
Health, Wellbeing & Work Yes
Investment No

Other topic(s) that the innovation relates to that are not listed above:

The website URL where information about the innovation is available:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.