Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.33
Liaison Sarah Tulga
Submission Date March 6, 2020

STARS v2.2

Northwestern University
OP-21: Water Use

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Sarah Tulga
Sustainability Program Coordinator
Facilities
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Level of ”Physical Risk Quantity” for the institution’s main campus as indicated by the World Resources Institute Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas:
Low to Medium

Total water withdrawal (potable and non-potable combined):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal 2,134,799.25 Gallons 4,016,633.37 Gallons

Potable water use:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use 2,134,799.25 Gallons 4,016,633.37 Gallons

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Period Sept. 1, 2018 Aug. 31, 2019
Baseline Period Sept. 1, 2012 Aug. 31, 2013

A brief description of when and why the water use baseline was adopted:

We only have information regarding reused water going back to our FY 2013


Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users":
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 5,057 5,490
Number of employees resident on-site 15 10
Number of other individuals resident on-site 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 19,207 16,916
Full-time equivalent of employees 10,195 9,345
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 405 312
Weighted campus users 23,015.75 20,836.75

Potable water use per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per weighted campus user 92.75 Gallons 192.77 Gallons

Percentage reduction in potable water use per weighted campus user from baseline:
51.88

Gross floor area of building space:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area 15,049,308 Gross Square Feet 13,621,749.45 Gross Square Feet

Potable water use per unit of floor area:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per unit of floor area 0.14 Gallons / GSF 0.29 Gallons / GSF

Percentage reduction in potable water use per unit of floor area from baseline:
51.89

Area of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Vegetated grounds 122 Acres 125 Acres

Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds 17,498.35 Gallons / Acre 32,133.07 Gallons / Acre

Percentage reduction in total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds from baseline:
45.54

A brief description of the institution's water-related behavior change initiatives:

sustainNU encourages behavior changes which save water through the Live Sustainably resources and staff, faculty, and student education efforts. Throughout a variety of online publications, websites and articles, sustainNU promoted changing laundry habits, reporting leaky faucets and leaks, and installing efficient fixtures. In the Green Office Program, offices are encouraged to educate and encourage staff to conserve water through changing hand washing and reporting leaks. In the Green Cup competition, students compete to reduce energy and water use. The goal of Green Cup is to encourage behavior change and show that small, everyday choices – like turning off the tap while you brush your teeth – can have a big impact on resource use. Student change their habits for a month and are encouraged to maintain these environmentally friendly practices post the competition.

See the below websites for examples of these behavior change communications and programs:

https://www.northwestern.edu/sustainability/take-action/live-sustainably/save-water.html

https://www.northwestern.edu/sustainability/docs/green-office-docs/green-office-guide_final.pdf

https://www.northwestern.edu/sustainability/news/2017/2017-12-Green-Cup.html

https://www.northwestern.edu/sustainability/news/2019/ten-tips-for-sustainable-living-at-northwestern.html


A brief description of the institution's water recovery and reuse initiatives:

At select sites on campus the University has invested in building rainwater recovery systems such as cisterns and drainage field water for irrigation purpose. At the School of Music a green-water storage system is used for irrigation and flushing of toilets. No potable water is used for flushing


A brief description of the institution's initiatives to replace plumbing fixtures, fittings, appliances, equipment, and systems with water-efficient alternatives:

NU irrigation systems utilize “smart technology” along with water efficient strategies in terms of design and material specification.


Website URL where information about the institution’s water conservation and efficiency efforts is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.