Overall Rating Platinum
Overall Score 86.82
Liaison Richard Demerjian
Submission Date March 28, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of California, Irvine
OP-1: Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Status Score Responsible Party
6.36 / 10.00 Richard Demerjian
Assistant Vice Chancellor
Office of Environmental Planning and Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Has the institution conducted a GHG emissions inventory that includes all Scope 1 and 2 emissions? :
Yes

Does the institution’s GHG emissions inventory include all, some or none of its Scope 3 GHG emissions from the following categories?:
All, Some, or None
Business travel All
Commuting All
Purchased goods and services None
Capital goods None
Waste generated in operations None
Fuel- and energy-related activities not included in Scope 1 or Scope 2 None
Other categories None

A copy of the most recent GHG emissions inventory:
A brief description of the methodology and/or tool used to complete the GHG emissions inventory, including how the institution accounted for each category of Scope 3 emissions reported above:

Using the financial control approach to determine organizational boundaries, UCI gathers a comprehensive annual inventory of greenhouse gas emission sources on campus. These data sets are reviewed, analyzed, and publicly reported using The Climate Registry General Reporting Protocol Version 2.1 dated January 2016.

Scope 3 emissions inventoried annually include commuting and university-paid air travel. GHG emissions associated with commuting are calculated by UCI Transportation and Distribution Services using AQMD survey data. University-paid air travel miles is collected through the UCI accounting office.


Has the GHG emissions inventory been validated internally by personnel who are independent of the GHG accounting and reporting process and/or verified by an independent, external third party?:
Yes

A brief description of the internal and/or external verification process:

The University of California, Irvine submits its greenhouse gas emission inventory report to a third party verification party annually. This independent verification process reviews the emission inventory against the Climate Registry's General Reporting Protocol dated January 2016, following the procedures outlined in the Registry’s General Verification Protocol (Version 2.0, June 2010).


Documentation to support the internal and/or external verification process:
Does the institution wish to pursue Part 2 and Part 3 of this credit? (reductions in Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions):
Yes

Gross Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross Scope 1 GHG emissions from stationary combustion 71,759 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 33,852 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Gross Scope 1 GHG emissions from other sources 2,125 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Gross Scope 2 GHG emissions from purchased electricity 3,477 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 55,275 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Gross Scope 2 GHG emissions from other sources 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Total 77,361 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 89,127 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year Jan. 1, 2016 Dec. 31, 2016
Baseline Year Jan. 1, 2000 Dec. 31, 2000

A brief description of when and why the GHG emissions baseline was adopted (e.g. in sustainability plans and policies or in the context of other reporting obligations):

The UCI Climate Action Plan and the UC Policy on Sustainable Practices commits the UC Irvine campus to reduce carbon emissions to 1990 baseline levels by 2020, and climate neutrality by 2025. The year 2000 was chosen as a baseline in the 2007 Climate Action Plan in which an interim goal was to reduce emissions to 2000 levels by 2014.


Figures needed to determine total carbon offsets:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Third-party verified carbon offsets purchased (exclude purchased RECs/GOs) 5,714 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Institution-catalyzed carbon offsets generated 6 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Carbon sequestration due to land that the institution manages specifically for sequestration 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Carbon storage from on-site composting 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Carbon offsets included above for which the emissions reductions have been sold or transferred by the institution 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Net carbon offsets 5,720 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent

A brief description of the offsets in each category reported above, including vendor, project source, verification program and contract timeframes (as applicable):

UCOP purchased guaranteed California Air Resources Board (CARB) offsets from Vitol, Inc and UC Irvine was allocated 5,714 MT CO2e for the 2016 emission year. The application of these offsets were verified by TCR.

The UC Irvine Local Offsets Program focuses on community collaboration and outreach related to energy efficiency, clean and renewable energy, and resulting greenhouse gas emission reductions in the local community. The program pursues projects involving privately owned and non-profit owned residential communities and collaborative projects with local agencies. Resulting carbon emission reductions catalyzed by UCI actions are documented through carbon offset agreements. As an example, over 20,500 pounds of annual CO2e emission reductions have resulted from a UCI facilitated lighting retrofit project within community facilities owned by a non-profit housing authority.


Emissions reductions attributable to Renewable Energy Certificate (REC) or Guarantee of Origin (GO) purchases:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Emissions reductions attributable to REC/GO purchases 178 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent

A brief description of the purchased RECs/GOs including vendor, project source and verification program:

Energy Attribute Certified RECs purchased in 2016 were for Gross Hall. Application of these RECs were verified as part of the Climate Registry inventory process.


Adjusted net Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Adjusted net Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions 71,463 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 89,127 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent

Figures needed to determine “Weighted Campus Users”:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 8,986 5,833
Number of employees resident on-site 0 0
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 33,093 20,211
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 8,050 9,681
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 2,107 0
Weighted campus users 31,523.50 23,877.25

Adjusted net Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Adjusted net Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions per weighted campus user 2.27 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent 3.73 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent

Percentage reduction in adjusted net Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions per weighted campus user from baseline:
39.27

Gross floor area of building space, performance year:
11,064,125 Gross Square Feet

Floor area of energy intensive building space, performance year:
Floor Area
Laboratory space 2,084,941 Square Feet
Healthcare space 157,791 Square Feet
Other energy intensive space 690,702 Square Feet

EUI-adjusted floor area, performance year:
16,240,291 Gross Square Feet

Adjusted net Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions per unit of EUI-adjusted floor area, performance year:
0.00 MtCO2e / GSF

Scope 3 GHG emissions, performance year:
Emissions
Business travel 33,924 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Commuting 11,576 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Purchased goods and services 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Capital goods 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Fuel- and energy-related activities not included in Scope 1 or Scope 2 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Waste generated in operations 354 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent
Other categories 0 Metric Tons of CO2 Equivalent

A brief description of the institution’s GHG emissions reduction initiatives, including efforts made during the previous three years:

The significant reduction in Scope 2 emissions from the baseline years is the result of campuswide deep energy efficiency projects and the addition of 3.2 megawatts of solar power in 2015.

UC Irvine’s carbon reduction program is aligned with the University of California’s Policy on Sustainable Practices, which until recently had the following goals:
-- By 2020: Reduce emissions to 1990 levels
-- By 2025: Achieve climate neutrality (Scope 1 & 2)
Under the leadership of UC President Janet Napolitano, the policy was amended in November 2013 and established the year 2025 as the date by which the UC system is to be carbon neutral.

The UC Irvine Climate Action Plan was updated in 2016 to reflect changes to the UC Policy on Sustainable Practices. The 2016 Update provides updated greenhouse gas emission projections, strategies to reach 2020 and 2025 goals, and an implementation and monitoring program.The UCI Climate Action Plan - 2016 Update can be viewed at: http://sustainability.uci.edu/wp-content/uploads/sites/5/2017/01/UCIrvine2016CAP.pdf

The UC Climate Solutions Steering Group – led by Wendell Brase, vice chancellor for administrative and business services at UC Irvine – created a plan to achieve systemwide carbon reduction: “Prospectus for a Sustainable Future” (November 2011). In it, the group identified “deep energy efficiency,” measures that reduce energy consumption and associated carbon emissions by half or more, as the most immediate, cost-feasible strategy to effect a substantial reduction in UC’s carbon footprint. This strategy underpins the systemwide plan, which initially targeted these three areas for deep energy savings: lighting, information technology, and laboratories. UC Irvine’s comprehensive energy program addresses all three.

In particular, UC Irvine’s award-winning Smart Labs Initiative has safely reduced laboratory energy use in new and already energy-efficient retrofitted laboratories by as much as 60 percent. This is a comprehensive program that re-engineers building control systems – ventilation, exhaust and lighting – from top to bottom. Smart Labs uses sensors and software to control lab and building systems (ventilation, HVAC, exhaust, illumination) precisely rather than rely on massive safety margins for ventilation rates, exhaust airspeeds, and other design criteria. This has been what some call a game-changer. Laboratories typically account for two-thirds of the energy used by research universities and have an enormous impact on their carbon footprint.

Additionally, the campus has a robust green building program and currently has 17 buildings that have earned a Platinum rating through the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program and another 10 that have achieved a Gold rating.

UCI has invested in deep energy efficiency programs (50 percent or greater energy savings) at the Main Campus over the past two decades, resulting in significant energy cost savings, GHG emission reductions, and facility renewal. Investments to date have occurred primarily through the California Statewide Energy Partnership (SEP) where $75 million has been invested since 2009 in projects with short to moderate financial payback periods (eight years or less) which will result in up to 33,000 MTCO2e of GHG reductions. As laboratories account for 66 percent of campus GHG emissions, the UCI SmartLabs program is targeting laboratory energy use through deep energy efficiency programs.UC Irvine has several on-site renewable energy systems. In 2009, 895 kW of photovoltaic panels were installed on 12 roofs. In partnership with the Advanced Power and Energy Program in The Henry Samueli School of Engineering, two 53 kW dual-axis tracking high-concentration photovoltaic solar power generators were installed in 2012.

In 2015 the campus installed 11,700 solar panels on the top of three parking structures generating up to 3.2 megawatts of power which quadrupled the amount of solar energy generated on campus.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:
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UC Irvine has been recognized nationally for its leadership efforts in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. In 2014 UCI was honored with the Climate Leadership Award for Organizational Leadership by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The award recognized UCI for a wide range of accomplishments including the Smart Labs Initiative, on-site renewable energy, and sustainable physical planning.

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.