Overall Rating Platinum
Overall Score 85.39
Liaison Kira Stoll
Submission Date March 4, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of California, Berkeley
AC-8: Campus as a Living Laboratory

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 4.00 / 4.00 Mikayla Tran
SDG & OS Engagement Fellow
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Campus Engagement:

SURG (SDG Undergraduate Research Group) is an undergraduate research group formed in Fall 2020, affiliated with the UC Berkeley Office of Sustainability and guided by the UN Sustainable Development Goals. We strive to research local cross-cutting issues, empower undergraduate voices, and increase the accessibility of research on campus. Undergraduate researchers join working groups that tackle an area of sustainability tied to the UN SDGs, contribute to a collaborative research report, and present their findings to key stakeholders. Recent research topics include: “Analyzing Economic Resiliency during the COVID-19 Pandemic with Regard to Local Businesses in the City of Berkeley,” “Connecting California's 2020 Wildfires to Climate Change,” and “Centering Environmental Justice in UCB Sustainability Report.” In addition to completing the final research papers, the students are taught best-practices and research methodology through academic mentor presentations throughout the semester.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/office-sustainability/os-projects/iaru-inspired-initiatives

https://surg.berkeley.edu/

One of the key metrics of The Green Initiative Fund is education, outreach, and behavior change. A prime example of campus engagement is the Residence Hall Education Program, which sought to reach incoming first-year students by implementing a program in the residence halls during move-in, providing foundational knowledge of zero-waste and environmental sustainability for everyone. Spearheaded by students, the Residence Hall Education Program held 26 events in 2018-2019 with 1350 total attendees.

Other campus engagement highlights from TGIF include:
- The Environmental Action Network and Software hosted an event discussing how students can have a political influence with 40 student attendees.
- Latinx and the Environment hosted 30-40 students at their seminar in 2018.
- Decolonizing the Environment Workshop Series hosts around 40 people for every workshop.
- In 2018, Environmental Education for Students of Color has hosted 18 workshops with 276 students registered.
- The Earth Action Initiative held 8 workshops with 334 attendees in 2017-2018.
- Equity and Inclusion in Campus Gardens hired 3 student interns.
- Latinx and the Environment Resource Fair held 2 events with 30 attendees for each event.

https://tgif.berkeley.edu/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Public Engagement?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Public Engagement:

The Student Environmental Resource Center (SERC) has partnered with GRID Alternatives to provide an annual UC Berkeley Solar Spring Break Team since spring 2014. GRID Alternatives’ Solar Spring Break provides college students the opportunity to spend their spring break installing solar panels on qualifying homes in underrepresented communities. Solar Spring Break’s direct impacts include financial savings for a low-income family, reduced carbon emission, and hands-on, technical educational enrichment for UC Berkeley students.

To continue teaching the values of the Solar Spring Break program during the COVID-19 Pandemic, SERC created a Renewable Energy and Environmental Justice DeCal. The course description states: "We all know energy is vital to today’s society, but burning fossil fuels to meet our demand is driving global warming. The new RE & EJ DeCal addresses the need for fair and clean energy in society as a way to combat injustice and climate change. The class will explore renewable energy, environmental justice, and their connection in the fight against the climate crisis through facilitator presentations and class discussions."

https://serc.berkeley.edu/solar-spring-break/

Alternative Breaks offers service-learning trips for students to explore a social justice issue through hands-on service supplemented with education and reflection. Trips run during winter and spring breaks and explore issues like immigration, environmental justice, public health, or poverty. Participants take a DeCal class before their trip to learn about the issue and the community partners they will be working with and to get to know each other. In Spring 2019, over 60 Berkeley students traveled near and far to spend their spring break on service-learning trips after completing a student-taught DeCal class focused on one social issue. Whether teaming up with Aliento, an immigration activist group in Arizona, or the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, our students renewed their commitment to serving their community partners.

https://publicservice.berkeley.edu/programs/alternative-breaks

In the Summer of 2018 and 2019, IARU (The International Alliance of Research Universities) offered the "COP4 Field Course - Borderland: Critical approaches to field research in the Global South." Over the duration of about 4 weeks, the collaborative effort between UC Berkeley, the University of Copenhagen, and Chiang Mai University exposed participants to themes of progressive field research and scholar activism, centered around the idea of "Borderlands." The course combined classroom learning with field engagement and immersion in the local environment that include short term placement with local NGOs or ongoing research projects in and around Chiang Mai, in northern Thailand.

http://www.iaruni.org/for-students/iaru-courses/iaru-courses-2019/722-iarucourses2019-cop4

Another example of a UC Berkeley public engagement project is BEACON, the Berkeley Environmental Air Quality & CO2 Network. BEACON is a new approach to observing atmospheric gases over an urban area. BEACON was designed with public obligation in mind, desiring to be environmental advocates who can provide policymakers with clear quantitative assessments of what their options are for achieving their policy goals of reducing CO2 emissions. The City of Oakland was ground zero for the first urban sensor network to provide real-time, neighborhood-by-neighborhood measurements of carbon dioxide – a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming – and other air pollutants. The prototype network, installed by student chemists at Berkeley will employ 40 sensors spread over a 27 square-mile grid, most of them mounted atop local schools to engage students in the project. The information the network will provide could be used to monitor local carbon dioxide emissions to check on the effectiveness of carbon-reduction strategies now mandated by the state.

A science curriculum for K-12 teachers using the BEACON sensors has been developed by scientists and educators at the Chabot Space and Science Center in Oakland, California. To the extent possible, nodes are being placed on the rooftops of local area schools, so that students may see for themselves the greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution in their area. They also have plans to place nodes on other local science museums, and will be working with staff to facilitate displays of the BEACON data.

More information about the program can be found here: http://beacon.berkeley.edu/overview/

Lastly, CALPIRG is a statewide, student funded and student directed, public interest advocacy organization. UC Berkeley's organizers and advocates train students on how to run effective campaigns to solve some of society's most urgent problems. Their primary mission is to encourage student power and activism and to serve as a resource to all student organizations. Current projects include raising awareness about the damages of single use plastics, helping the campus to implement the recent single use plastics ban, and moving the campus toward bee friendly practices. CALPIRG engages in educational outreach activities such as class presentations and tabling to increase student awareness and support for their campaigns.

https://calpirgstudents.org/chapters/uc-berkeley/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Air & Climate?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Air & Climate:

Bonnie Reiss Carbon Neutrality Student Fellowship Program
The UC President’s Bonnie Reiss Carbon Neutrality Student Fellowship Program funds student-generated projects that support the UC system’s goal to produce zero-net greenhouse gas emissions by 2025. All 10 UC campuses plus the UC Office of the President, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory participate in the program. The program began in spring 2015, with fellows participating in a July 20 symposium in San Francisco. The program is open to both undergraduate and graduate students, and administered at each location to ensure that student efforts align with local needs.

Carbon Neutrality Initiative Fellows create their own projects for the academic year, such as the recent UCB fellow's award-winning curriculum called Zero Waste: Solutions for a Sustainable Future. This curriculum covers a multitude of topics: the science of modern landfills, the history of “trash”, personal waste reduction, the circular economy, cradle-to-cradle design, industrialized food, climate change & politics, sustainable cities & landscapes, and more.

https://ucop.edu/carbon-neutrality-initiative/cni-fellows/index.html

CalCAP
The Cal Climate Action Partnership (CalCAP) is a collaboration of faculty, administration, staff and students working to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and achieve carbon neutrality at UC Berkeley. In 2007, the initial work of CalCAP led then-Chancellor Robert Birgeneau to commit the campus to its first greenhouse gas emissions reduction target: to reduce GHG emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2014. Berkeley met this target in 2012, two years ahead of schedule and eight years ahead of UC Policy requirements and State of California goals. CalCAP is now working to achieve the UC systemwide goal of being carbon neutral from building energy use and from the fleet by 2025 - for Berkeley this will mean reducing our emissions by 80% in the coming decade. The Office of Sustainability and Energy coordinates CalCAP planning and reporting activities in consultation with the CalCAP Steering Committee and many campus faculty, staff and students engaged in climate initiatives.

Undergraduate and graduate students’ creative initiatives contribute to campus carbon-cutting solutions. Student CalCAP research has helped us better understand the full scope of our emissions – from evaluation of the carbon associated with our purchasing to projecting how much carbon we would be responsible for 40 years from now if we don’t curb it. Student work has also made recommendations on a renewable energy mix for the campus and explored deeper energy efficiency measures.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/calcap-about

Cool Campus Challenge

From April 1 through April 26, 2019 the 10 campuses across the University of California system participated in a competition to see which UC location can do the most to reduce its carbon footprint. Contestants also spread the word about the importance of going carbon neutral. The Cool Campus Challenge is a friendly 4-week challenge designed to educate and motivate the University of California campus community to take simple energy-saving, waste reducing and sustainability-focused actions to lower their carbon footprint and help the UC system reach carbon neutrality by 2025. These collective efforts have helped advance UC in its goal of carbon neutrality by 2025.

Highlights from the 2019 Cool Campus Challenge:
- UC engaged over 22,000 participants, engaging 7.6% of the entire system-wide population.
- Participants on average took 9 actions each, for a total of 200,000 completed actions.
- Roughly two-thirds of participants were students.
- UC reduced 10,220 metric tons CO2e in self-reported actions, equivalent to taking 2,170 cars off the road for a year.

UC Berkeley was crowned the Coolest UC Campus in the 2019 Cool Campus Challenge. Highlights from Berkeley include:
- Berkeley racked up the top carbon reducing score 9.5 million points!
- Berkeley engaged over 4,215 participants, engaging 7.5% of the campus.
- We reduced 2,026 metric tons CO2e in self-reported actions, equivalent to taking about 500 cars off the road for a year.

https://www.coolcampuschallenge.org/
https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/engage/cool-campus-challenge


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Buildings?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Buildings:

The Global Environment Theme House provides a small community experience within the larger University and attracts students who are committed to protecting the environment. GETH residents, also known as GETHies, learn about green living and giving back to our environment, grow as leaders, and develop friendships. In addition, the theme program assistant helps to guide GETHies through the GETH academic seminar. Discussion topics include sustainability, pollution, advocacy for animals and environment, environmental and social justice, global climate, gentrification, and urban planning and development.

https://reslife.berkeley.edu/academics/theme-programs/global-environment-theme-house/

The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) provides institutional and financial support for the Building Sustainability at Cal program, which trains students to help reduce the environmental impact of campus buildings by identifying structural and operational changes and working to carry out those changes. Some projects within Building Sustainability at Cal help students earn LEED Certified credentials. The program also has helped implement the Green Paws Program that supports smaller-scale buildings (those that cannot be LEED Certified) on campus as they work to meet and surpass sustainability goals.

https://tgif.berkeley.edu/

In terms of academic programs, the sustainable environmental design major recognizes that the emergent, multidisciplinary field of sustainability science is growing rapidly. A capstone workshop course, ENV DES 106 Sustainable Environmental Design Workshop, combines academics and experiential learning. Linking sustainability science and technology with urban form and social dynamics, the workshop requires independent and collaborative research, with an external "client" organization, to offer innovative strategies for sustainable environmental design.

https://ced.berkeley.edu/academics/bachelor-of-arts-in-sustainable-environmental-design

The Haas Green Team focuses on sustainability initiatives in partnership with Berkeley Haas leadership and the greater UC Berkeley community. Their members volunteer their time towards a two-fold mission: 1) to assist Berkeley Haas in becoming a model of sustainable operations, and 2) to inspire its staff, students, and faculty to incorporate green practices into their offices, homes, and communities. In 2019, Chou Hall was deemed the greenest academic building in the nation, and is the first certified zero waste academic building in the world. By creating a space in which landfill is neither created nor disposed of, the Berkeley Haas community is reducing its carbon footprint and causing building users to think deeper about the life cycle of their waste. The building serves as a model for environmental sustainability at UC Berkeley and represents a critical step toward the University of California’s Zero Waste by 2020 and Carbon Neutrality by 2025 goals.

The Chou Hall Zero Waste Initiative would not have been successful without the role of the student lead because we didn’t have a formalized committee or consultant in place. We were fortunate to have two phenomenal student leads that were both getting their Master in Design Practice out of the College of Natural Resources at UC Berkeley. Among other responsibilities, the Student Project Lead was responsible for creating and driving workstreams, identifying and managing the student team members, managing the certification process, and sharing industry knowledge.

https://haas.berkeley.edu/human-resources/career-development/staff-organizations/green-team/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Energy?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Energy:

Berkeley Innovative Solutions (BIS) Consulting Group
BERC, the Berkeley Energy & Resources Collaborative, connects, educates and motivates students, alumni, faculty and industry professionals to address the world's energy and resource challenges. One of BERC’s mostly popular programs is Berkeley Innovative Solutions (BIS) which match industry, government or non-profit consulting projects with teams of Berkeley students for a semester. BIS seeks to further the UN Sustainable Development Goals by matching students to SDG-aligned clients and projects that accelerate new-economy innovations or tackle societal problems. Students receive an optional academic credit, expense reimbursement, experiential learning, networking into other academic departments, skill development and industry experience.

https://berc.berkeley.edu/programs/berc-innovative-solutions

Bonnie Reiss Carbon Neutrality Student Fellowship Program
The UC President’s Bonnie Reiss Carbon Neutrality Student Fellowship Program funds student-generated projects that support the UC system’s goal to produce zero-net greenhouse gas emissions by 2025. In this program, UC Berkeley supports students in researching sustainability options. The fellows then offer educational presentations about the science and effects of climate change, as well as ways to reduce personal energy consumption, in coordination with the UC-wide goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2025. All 10 UC campuses plus the UC Office of the President, UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory participate in the program. The program began in spring 2015, with fellows participating in a July 20 symposium in San Francisco. The program is open to both undergraduate and graduate students, and administered at each location to ensure that student efforts align with local needs.

Carbon Neutrality Initiative Fellows create their own projects for the academic year, such as the recent UCB fellow's award-winning curriculum called Zero Waste: Solutions for a Sustainable Future. This curriculum covers a multitude of topics: the science of modern landfills, the history of “trash”, personal waste reduction, the circular economy, cradle-to-cradle design, industrialized food, climate change & politics, sustainable cities & landscapes, and more.

https://ucop.edu/carbon-neutrality-initiative/cni-fellows/index.html


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Food & Dining?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Food & Dining:

The University of California Global Food Initiative addresses one of the critical issues of our time: how to sustainably and nutritiously feed a world population expected to reach eight billion by 2025. The initiative aligns the university’s research, outreach and operations in a sustained effort to develop, demonstrate and export solutions — throughout California, the United States and the world — for food security, health and sustainability. UC’s Global Food Initiative Student Fellowship Program funds student-generated research, related projects or internships that focus on food issues. All 10 UC campuses plus UC Agriculture and Natural Resources and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are participating in the program. UC Berkeley hosts about 3-4 GFI student fellows every year.

One of the recent UC Berkeley GFI projects involved a multidisciplinary research team that analyzed the impact of heat waves on agricultural labor in the Western Central Valley, California. The research centers on both health and socioeconomic impacts not only to agricultural workers but also to their families and communities. This project is a partnership with the Health Initiative of the Americas (PIMSA) and the University of California Institute for Mexico and the United States (UC Mexus), as well as community partner The LEAP Institute (Huron, Calif.).

https://www.ucop.edu/global-food-initiative/

The Berkeley Food Institute (BFI) supports student fellows across disciplines to research pressing policy issues and undertake community engagement projects. BFI also convenes the UC Global Food Initiative Student Fellows. In 2019, the Berkeley Food Institute developed a survey to track the business practices of caterers who provide service to campus, using the detailed criteria from the guidelines. Vendors rated their own practices, and by pledging to share this information publicly have “certified” the truthfulness of their responses. A Guide for UC Berkeley Departments on Sustainable and Just Catering is available online: https://food.berkeley.edu/foodscape/campus-facilities/sustainable-and-just-catering/

https://food.berkeley.edu/

The Clark Kerr Garden is managed by the RSSP grounds department along with the Housing & Dining Sustainability Team Garden Coordinators in collaboration with the RSSP grounds department and committed volunteers. Our goal is to be a space where anyone can hang out, pass through, learn something, collaborate, and enjoy food together. We hold skills training workshops and celebrations in the garden and around Clark Kerr’s edible landscapes. We work with dining hall staff and chefs to ensure that they have access and can bring in fresh, local herbs or produce into the dining hall. We have an active role in campus garden initiatives and coordinate with the Basic Needs Committee to provide food for students who need it.

https://www.ocf.berkeley.edu/~rsp/

The Alt: Meat Lab is a hub connecting students, entrepreneurs, venture capitalists and industry leaders interested in creating the plant-based food of the future. First and foremost an academic resource, the Lab aims to research and educate. Led by Dr. Ricardo San Martin, the Lab works in conjunction with — but independent from — various partners on projects that put the Lab on the front lines of our changing culinary landscape. Although the Lab began its work replicating animal meat, the Lab is broadly interested in all types of animal products, including but not limited to eggs, dairy and seafood. The Alt:Meat Lab is housed at the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology at UC Berkeley’s College of Engineering, and is comprised of the Lab and a project driven class offered to undergraduate and graduate students.

https://altmeatlab.berkeley.edu/

Food for Thought: Seminars and resources for your basic needs
The Food for Thought program began in Fall 2017 with the idea to combine life skill classes with resources. We started with only our food seminar course. Since then, our program has grown to offer more courses and resources! Our group of UC Berkeley students and alum have created a series of skill development seminars, including a nutrition seminar focused on exploring food insecurity and society. All students are given the chance to gain teaching experience for units after they have taken a course. Our goal is to help other students gain life skills that they can take beyond the classroom setting.

https://basicneeds.berkeley.edu/our-programs/food-for-thought


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Grounds?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Grounds:

College of Environmental Design Student Spotlight
In 2020, a senior studying Sustainable Environmental Design completed a revamp of Berkeley's African American Theme House front yard, highlighting its eco-friendliness through drought-tolerant plants and a drip irrigation system. By placing the water system very close to the roots of plants, evaporation is minimized and large quantities of water are saved in comparison to other irrigation methods. The drip irrigation served the current and future plants well as they needed little water to establish. As the student stated, "these sorts of landscape decisions are not only economical, but also will allow cities and green spaces to be more resilient in the face of climate change and more periods of drought."

https://ced.berkeley.edu/events-media/news/ced-student-spotlight-chadwick-bowlin

Herbicide-Free UC’s mission is to stop the use of toxic herbicides across all University of California campuses.
This campaign has three major components:
- Groundskeeper Support & Engagement
- Student Education
- Research

Herbicide-Free UC teaches students how to cultivate the necessary relationships with groundskeepers and learn the landscape needs of the campus, as well as what specific information and resources groundskeepers need in order to reduce herbicide usage. The campaign also provides resources in the form of data, student support and financial support, as well as training and instruction for groundskeepers in alternative maintenance methods that promote sustainability. In order to institutionalize these efforts across the UC system, the campaign offers support to develop a consensus-based language for university policy as well as a system-wide best practices guide for campus units implementing this policy.

In May 2019, Herbicide-Free Cal efforts were rewarded when the University of California issued a ban on the use of glyphosate-based herbicides at all UC locations. In a public letter, UC President Janet Napolitano noted that the ban has been instated "due to concerns about possible human health and ecological hazards. The UCOP President has accepted recommendations for a full ban. The Systemwide Pesticide Oversight Committee (SPOC) has replaced the Herbicide Task Force and is implementing the recommendations.

https://www.ucop.edu/safety-and-loss-prevention/environmental/groups/spoc.html
https://facilities.berkeley.edu/herbicide-free-uc
https://www.herbicidefreecampus.org/
https://www.dailycal.org/2019/05/23/uc-system-suspends-glyphosate-herbicide-use-in-light-of-student-campaign/
https://ucanr.edu/sites/anrstaff/files/304263.pdf

Bee Campus USA - University of California, Berkeley
UC Berkeley is now an affiliate of Bee Campus USA, an initiative of the Xerces Society that aims to foster ongoing dialogue to raise awareness of the role pollinators play in our communities and how each of us can take action to create healthy habitat. Student committee members teach the student-led DeCal course: "Save the Bees: Pollinator Conservation through Environmental Activism." This is a discussion-based and field-based course, integrating reading, discussion, and hands-on experience connecting with nature near students' home. At the end of the course, students will gain a better perspective of bees and the ways we can help alleviate the number of threats facing them from human society.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/engage/bee-campus


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Purchasing?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Purchasing:

The Green Labs Program was created to improve sustainable practices within research and teaching labs on campus with the goal to incorporate the use of water reduction, waste elimination and energy saving technology, along with actions and procurement strategies for researchers, instructors, and lab spaces. The Green Labs (GLs) program was started by the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Sustainability (CACS) in 2012 to promote environmental management and sustainable operations in laboratories at UC Berkeley. To date it has been a grassroots effort overall with little funding except for small grants covering student interns. Green Labs released its 2020 Action Plan with the help from nine Student Green Labs Fellows, who collaborated with campus stakeholders to identify near-term initiatives and responsibilities as well as longer-range ideas for Green Labs.

Green Labs will partner with Supply Chain Management and equipment vendors to review applicable policy details, lab needs and bulk pricing of new lab equipment. Green Labs may also attempt to garner free trials of equipment or create discounts with vendors for bulk pricing or in order to create lab incentives for joining the certification program or for other reasons to help labs make improvements.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/engage/green-certifications
https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/sites/default/files/uc_berkeley_green_labs_action_plan_may_2020.pdf

Students in the Rausser College of Natural Resources also incorporated real-world purchasing relationships in their academic sustainability research. In Spring 2019, an undergraduate in the Rausser College of Natural Resources completed an honors thesis on “An Analysis of the Financial Relationship Between ‘Big Food’ Industries and the University of California, Berkeley.” Another student completed a thesis on "Discovering Green Marketing Opportunities in Social Media For the South Korean Cosmetics Industry," which aimed to discover the potential to utilize social media as a green marketing platform for the South Korean cosmetics industry.

https://nature.berkeley.edu/advising/honors-program-participants
https://nature.berkeley.edu/classes/es196/projects/2019final/LeeD_2019.pdf


IIs the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Transportation?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Transportation:

UC Berkeley Parking and Transportation professional and student staff have released: “Let Berkeley Moves! Plan Your Trip.” P&T staff offer their services to help with individualized commute planning. They can find UC Berkeley students, staff, and faculty the right bus route, schedule and fare information, connect with possible carpoolers through our Rideamigos platform, and other resources to make their trip easy. This service utilizes UC Berkeley infrastructure and operations for applied student learning focused on identifying sustainable modes of transportation and opportunities for car sharing.

https://pt.berkeley.edu/home

The Transportation Sustainability Research Center (TSRC) was formed in 2006 to combine the research forces of six campus groups at UC Berkeley: the University of California Transportation Center, the University of California Energy Institute, the Institute of Transportation Studies, the Energy and Resources Group, the Center for Global Metropolitan Studies, and the Berkeley Institute of the Environment. TSRC uses a wide range of analysis and evaluation tools, including questionnaires, interviews, focus groups, automated data collection systems, and simulation models to collect data and perform analysis and interpretation of the data. The center then develops impartial findings and recommendations for key issues of interest to policymakers to aid in decision-making. The TSRC team is comprised of dedicated research staff, support personnel, and student researchers.

https://tsrc.berkeley.edu/

The University of California Institute of Transportation Studies (UC ITS) is a network of faculty, research and administrative staff, and students dedicated to advancing the state of the art in transportation engineering, planning, and policy for the people of California. Established by the Legislature in 1947, ITS has branches at UC Berkeley, UC Davis, UC Irvine, and UCLA. An initiative of UC ITS, the California Resilient and Innovative Mobility Initiative (CA RIMI) serves as a living laboratory – bringing together university experts, policymakers, public agencies, industry stakeholders, and community leaders – to inform the transportation system’s immediate COVID-19 response and recovery needs while establishing a long-term vision and pathway for directing innovative mobility to develop sustainable and resilient transportation in California and the United States. Their 2020 publication: “Public Transit and Shared Mobility COVID-19 Recovery: Policy Recommendations and Research Needs” is available online: https://escholarship.org/uc/item/9nh6w2gq#main

https://www.ucits.org/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Waste?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Waste:

The Zero Waste Research Center (ZWRC) at the Student Environmental Resource Center (SERC) actualizes innovative zero waste programs and educational initiatives toward a closed loop system at UC Berkeley. The ZWRC supports student-led collaborative projects, researches environmental and social impacts of waste, and engages with the wider community about waste solutions. One of their recent focus areas includes the Vermicomposting Project. In efforts to better campus’ waste management practices and improve waste-related knowledge and transparency, UC Berkeley affiliates are working towards developing the capacity to process all of campus’ organic waste matter in-house. Student interns at ZWRC will work on processing some of campus’s own organic waste in-house, improving campus’s knowledge and understanding of their organic waste stream, and developing outreach and educational programs with Richmond community farms and schools.

Additionally, the Zero Waste Research Center (ZWRC) at UC Berkeley, in conjunction with Cal Zero Waste, the College of Engineering, and the College of Environmental Design are working to create the University of California’s first holistic Plastic Recycling Facility. At this facility, the University’s plastic and recycling waste will be transported to a facility in Richmond, California, at the UC Berkeley Global Campus, where through proper collection, sorting, and redistribution, a cradle-to-cradle system of waste will be created. This project will allow for the University of California, Berkeley to expand recycling and reuse programs, reduce its carbon footprint, and create research and education opportunities for its students and the community of Richmond.

https://serc.berkeley.edu/zero-waste/

The Chou Hall Zero Waste Initiative is a joint effort led by a multidisciplinary team of graduate and undergraduate students working closely with Cal Zero Waste, Haas faculty and staff, facilities management, and building vendors to ensure that building operations are designed for successful waste diversion. In 2019, Chou Hall officially became the country’s greenest academic building, having earned TRUE Zero Waste certification at the highest possible level along with a LEED Platinum certification for its energy efficient design and operation. The TRUE Platinum Zero Waste certification came after more than a year of dedicated waste sorting, composting, and other efforts to divert over 90 percent of Chou’s landfill waste. The official notice came from Green Business Certification Inc. (GBSI) on Dec. 20, following an on-site audit by the U.S. Green Building Council.

The Chou Hall Zero Waste Initiative would not have been successful without the role of the student lead because we didn’t have a formalized committee or consultant in place. We were fortunate to have two phenomenal student leads that were both getting their Master in Design Practice out of the College of Natural Resources at UC Berkeley. Among other responsibilities, the Student Project Lead was responsible for creating and driving workstreams, identifying and managing the student team members, managing the certification process, and sharing industry knowledge.

https://haas.berkeley.edu/human-resources/career-development/staff-organizations/green-team/

In Spring of 2020, CALPIRG students helped to implement the most aggressive Single Use Plastic Elimination Policy at an American institution. This policy has been signed by the Chancellor and seeks to eliminate all non-essential single use plastics from campus operations by 2030. This spans nine different “sectors” including labs, food service, office supplies, and more. Right now, a team of over a dozen students are collaborating with staff to create a 10 year roadmap that will help us to achieve this goal. The roadmap UC Berkeley will follow over the coming years to reach this target and will inform future plans including the Campus Zero Waste Plan.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/zero-waste

In Spring of 2019, students on campus established the Zero Waste Coalition in an effort to improve coordination on zero-waste related work across campus. The Coalition brings dozens of students together to collaborate on projects, work with administration and staff to streamline zero waste practices, and educates and engages the student body on the importance of Zero Waste. In Fall of 2020, over 1500 students listened to presentations given at the beginning of their classes on Zoom about the importance of Zero Waste and Environmental Justice. These presentations kicked off an entire month of programming focused on these themes called “Earth Justice Month.”

In Fall of 2020, a new “Zero Waste Lab” was established. This space on campus allows for undergraduate students to build on past analysis and create new research on topics related to zero waste intended to provide insight on reduction strategies.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/zero-waste/zero-waste-coalition

The student-managed ReUSE program operates 18 on-campus reuse stations for office supplies and the annual Second Chance clothing sales and reader giveaways. ReUSE projects reduce waste by 2-5 tons annually. The campus also works to reuse office supplies, equipment and vehicles through the Overstock and Surplus Den. The 2018 TGIF-funded Repair for Reuse project aimed to have Clinic staff work closely with ReUSE to plan how the repair clinic can eventually be incorporated as a volunteer-run service offered by the ReUSE store through the training of ReUSE volunteers in the necessary repair and sewing skills. Now, Repair for ReUse recycles around 20 pounds of clothing per week.

Students working with the ReUSE program also research and write original content on the social and environmental implications of thrift shopping. Recent content includes "Who Thrift Shops?"- which analyzes demographic data and thrift shopping trends- and "Has the Stigma Surrounding Secondhand Shopping been Eliminated?"

https://reuse.berkeley.edu/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Water?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Water:

The Campus Water Sustainability Research and Opportunities Map project, initiated by the Berkeley Water Center (BWC), aims to create, maintain and disseminate a campus water sustainability research and opportunities map. Student interns, in collaboration with the Berkeley Water Center staff, will identify existing water-related classes, research-projects, faculty, and opportunities on campus by searching course catalogs, interviewing faculty with related interests about research opportunities in their labs, and outreaching to student groups to develop a visually-appealing, user-friendly map of water sustainability research and opportunities on campus.

About the Berkeley Water Center:
We cultivate, facilitate and support a broad range of interdisciplinary research projects to address local and global water challenges. We convene diverse teams to understand current issues and collaboratively innovate to prevent future water crises.

https://bwc.berkeley.edu/

Every year, the Cal Enviro student group competes at the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Mid Pacific conference against universities in the western United States. The task is to design and construct a cheap, simple, sustainable, and effective water filter that can treat wastewater (whose constituents are decided upon by the hosting university). Through the spirit of competition, the team hopes to promote awareness of challenges in wastewater treatment, encourage design and application of innovative water filters, and build long lasting connections between students.

https://enviroteam.berkeley.edu/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Coordination & Planning:

Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability (CACS)
Established in 2003, the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability (CACS) promotes environmental management and sustainable development on campus. Membership is drawn from faculty, staff, students and alumni and meetings are open to everyone. The Committee is charged with advising the Chancellor on matters pertaining to the environment and sustainability as it directly relates to the University of California, Berkeley. To fulfill this obligation, CACS draws strength from its diverse composition of faculty, staff, students and alumni. Students are integral in researching and providing input to zero waste reports, diversity and inclusion initiatives, and sustainability plans.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/office-sustainability/cacs

In Fall 2020, the Student Advisory Council on Undergraduate Education (SACUE) members had the special opportunity to participate in a project called "Envision the Campus of Tomorrow." SACUE students worked work with a Senior Planner from Capital Strategies to provide feedback on the Long Range Development Plan and the Campus Master Plan. Students were asked to engage and evaluate these projects through an equity and inclusion lens. They engaged in workshop-style sessions or other formats where they will have the opportunity to field questions.

About SACUE:
SACUE shapes the student experience at UC Berkeley by providing critical feedback to campus leaders on undergraduate initiatives and programs. Convened by Vice Chancellor for Undergraduate Education Catherine Koshland, SACUE is composed of undergraduate students and meets throughout the academic year to engage with campus decision-makers on issues that affect all undergraduates. By participating in SACUE, students have the opportunity to work closely with key stakeholders, build networks, and provide feedback on critical campus projects. SACUE members attend monthly check-ins and have the opportunity to work on projects with campus stakeholders.

https://vcue.berkeley.edu/committees/sacue


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Diversity & Affordability:

In Fall 2020, group of five graduate students from the Environmental Science, Policy, and Management (ESPM) department helped create a graduate-level class, “Critical Engagements in Anti-Racist Environmental Scholarship.” The class was born out of ongoing exchanges in the Rausser College of Natural Resources to improve teaching, mentoring, research ethics, communications, and college climate for Black students in ESPM, and recruitment and retention efforts of scholars of color. A graduate student working group was formed to co-create the 200-level course to engage students, faculty, postdocs, and staff in examining anti-racism in environmental scholarship in the context of the Black Lives Matter movement.

https://grad.berkeley.edu/news/announcements/how-graduate-students-are-advancing-anti-racist-scholarship-in-their-department/

The Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability (CACS) Working Group on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Sustainability was formed in 2018. The mission of the group is to identify and recommend policies, practices and strategies that elevate and integrate an intersectional approach towards diversity, equity, and inclusivity in campus sustainability initiatives. The group seeks to strengthen the diversity, equity, and inclusion of the UC Berkeley undergraduate, graduate and professional student, faculty, and staff populations contributing to sustainable practices. We will develop recommendations, cultivate a sense of belonging in sustainability spaces, and situate environmental and social justice as central pillars of campus sustainability efforts, including in operations/administration, co-curricular learning activities, and physical planning. The working group includes student and staff representatives from the UC Berkeley Office of Sustainability, Parking & Transportation, Student Environmental Resource Center, Basic Needs Center, Rausser College of Natural Resources, African American Student Development Office, Students of Color Environmental Collective, and Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Sustainability.

https://sustainability.berkeley.edu/office-sustainability/cacs/cacs-working-group-diversity-equity-and-inclusion-sustainability

The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) provided financial and institutional assistance to a number of environmental justice projects in its recent 2019 and 2020 grant cycles.
- “Phase II: Decolonize the Environment” hosted a series of workshops on environmental intersectionality to introduce and explore systems of oppression that creates both environmental racism as well as social injustices.
- The “Environmental Education for Students of Color” project sought to diversify the environmental education that students of color receive on this campus at a level that is immediately feasible, inspiring, and desperately needed. This project aimed to foster an intersectional environmental movement by hosting a conference that inspires and empowers underrepresented folx in the environmental movement.
- “Increasing Diversity in the Environmental Workforce Through Education and Training” aimed to increase diversity in the environmental sector and STEM fields by providing first generation and underrepresented students technical environmental training often needed for jobs in environmental fields. Through partnerships with community organizations, environmental professionals, graduate students and faculty, students will participate in trainings such as: soil sampling, air quality, and water testing.
- Lastly, the 2020 TGIF grant supported Mapping for Environmental Justice (MEJ), an initiative to create interactive and publicly-accessible maps displaying environmental justice data for individual states. With guidance from the residents of impacted communities, MEJ combines environment, public health, and demographic data into an indicator of vulnerability for communities in every state.

https://tgif.berkeley.edu/

The Basic Needs Center student and staff team is committed to fostering belonging and justice on the UC Berkeley campus through a robust model of prevention, intervention and emergency relief efforts. Their efforts aim to combat the structural drivers of basic needs insecurity such as rising income inequality, increasing cost of living, inadequate high school preparation, and more. Using a holistic and systematic approach, BNC targets the different facets of basic needs insecurity on campus in order to consistently reduce the number of students that require emergency resources. Each year, BNC student staff publish a report on the current status of Basic Needs efforts in order to continue learning collectively as a campus community.

https://basicneeds.berkeley.edu/home


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Investment & Finance:

The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) provides funding, via grants, for projects to students, faculty and others who improve and support UC Berkeley's campus sustainability efforts. TGIF allocates funds to projects that promote sustainable modes of transportation, increase energy and water efficiency, restore habitat, promote environmental and food justice and reduce the amount of waste created by UC Berkeley. Portions of the fund also support education and behavior change initiatives, student financial aid (via return to aid) and student internships. Students, faculty and staff may submit project proposals, which are selected for funding by the annually appointed TGIF Committee, consisting of students, faculty and staff, on which the students have the majority vote.

TGIF is administered by the TGIF Committee and the TGIF Coordinator. The Committee's voting members include one student representative each from the ASUC, the Chancellor's Advisory Committee on Sustainability, the Graduate Assembly and the general undergraduate student body, as well as by one representative each from Real Estate, Administration & Finance and the Faculty Senate. Non-voting members include a representative from the Committee on Student Fees, ex-officios from the Office of Sustainability and Construction & Design, and an ASUC Senator.

TGIF is funded by a $6.00 per semester student fee, beginning in the fall of 2007 and persisting for 10 years. Since its inaugural grant cycle in spring 2008, TGIF has awarded more than $3.4 million in grants to 251 grant projects. These projects have included the funding of 464 student sustainability internships. As of Spring 2020, 182 TGIF projects have successfully concluded and 63 are currently in-progress. Only 9 projects have been discontinued, with funds returned to be allocated to future projects.

https://tgif.berkeley.edu/

The Haas Sustainable & Impact Finance initiative aims to create leaders who use impact investing and sustainable finance to drive positive change and opportunities. We do this through the research, education and leadership of our students, alumni and the wider business community.

Praised as ambitious and groundbreaking, the Sustainable Investment Fund at Haas is the first and largest student-led SRI fund within a leading business school. It offers our MBA students real-world experience in delivering both strong financial returns and positive social impact. Formerly known as the Haas Socially Responsible Investment Fund, since 2008 the student principals have more than doubled the initial investment to +$3M, learning through experience about SRI and ESG investment strategies and practices. At the end of the year, student principals create a publicly available annual report for the Fund. Each year a team of student Principals manages the Haas Sustainable Investment Fund, learning through experience about SRI and ESG investment strategies and practices.

For Fall 2020, Haas Sustainable & Impact Finance also launched the new Impact Search Fund program, in partnership with Gratitude Railroad, enabling MBA students to explore how to use this unique private equity investment vehicle to acquire and grow existing businesses, leveraging them for social impact and sustainable business practices.

https://haas.berkeley.edu/saif/
https://haas.berkeley.edu/saif/curriculum/sif/
https://haas.berkeley.edu/saif/news/launching-impact-search-funds/


Is the institution utilizing its infrastructure and operations as a living laboratory for applied student learning for sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work?:
Yes

A brief description of the projects and how they contribute to understanding or advancing sustainability in relation to Wellbeing & Work:

Offered every fall semester, the Nutrition in the Community class (NST 166) offers undergraduate students the opportunity to create motivational social marketing campaigns to increase awareness of nutritional issues or influence positive behavior change. Students form groups and create and present a social marketing campaign to encourage healthy behavior. Once each project was complete, the class rated the presentations based on quality and potential efficacy. The following groups/presentations received the highest scores from the class for each of the four central topics:
- More Affordable & Accessible Food - Farmer's Market Transportation
- Eliminating Food Waste/Sustainable Food Practices - RAWR (Repurposing and Waste Reduction)
- Education & Services around Healthy Eating - PreGo
- New/Proposed Changes to Nutrition/Food Policies - New Healthy Eating Plate

https://nst.berkeley.edu/news/2021/02/course-highlight-nutrition-in-the-community

The UC Berkeley Public Health Nutrition Program trains current and future leaders in food and nutrition research, policy, and practice to identify current and emerging public health nutrition challenges and solutions. The program is hosted under the Master’s in Public Health Nutrition (Two-year MPH). The program's partnerships offer our students unique opportunities to enhance their academic coursework by seeking out hands-on learning experiences through jobs and internships, workshops, talks, and events, as well as fellowships and funding. Example partnerships include the Berkeley Food Institute and the Nutrition Policy Institute.

https://publichealth.berkeley.edu/academics/community-health-sciences/public-health-nutrition-2-year-mph/

The Sponsored Projects for Undergraduate Research (SPUR) program encourages faculty and undergraduate students in the Rausser College of Natural Resources to collaborate on research projects by providing a grant to support their joint project. Students in the College of Natural Resources have many opportunities to work with outstanding faculty on research projects, including projects centered around wellbeing. For example, faculty member Susana L Matias leads research on Physical and emotional health benefits of participating in community gardens. This project will document the potential benefits of volunteering in community gardens in campus. Student and faculty researchers will explore food intake, weight status, depression, stress and sense of belonging among students who volunteer in the Berkeley Student Farms. Previous research among youth and older adults indicate that community gardening improve healthy eating and emotional health, but evidence is lacking regarding the potential benefits of this activities in young adults and/or in a college setting. They plan to implement an online survey and conduct focus groups to collect data among Cal students, and in that way, fill this evidence gap.

https://nature.berkeley.edu/undergraduate-research/spur/


Website URL where information about the institution’s living laboratory program is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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The information in this field was collected through public information available online from The Green Initiative Fund, Student Environmental Resource Center, Office of Sustainability, and other campus departmental/student groups.

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.