Overall Rating Gold - expired
Overall Score 65.82
Liaison Kimberly Reeves
Submission Date Feb. 20, 2015
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Colorado Colorado Springs
OP-26: Water Use

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.81 / 4.00 Linda Kogan
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Level of water risk for the institution’s main campus:
Medium to High

Total water use (potable and non-potable combined)::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water use 45,052,601 Gallons 33,146,707 Gallons

Potable water use::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use 45,052,601 Gallons 33,154,696 Gallons

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users"::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of residential students 1,140 755
Number of residential employees 2 0
Number of in-patient hospital beds 0 0
Full-time equivalent enrollment 8,667 6,774
Full-time equivalent of employees 1,319 990
Full-time equivalent of distance education students 988 198

Gross floor area of building space::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area 1,832,183 Square Feet 1,392,472 Square Feet

Area of vegetated grounds::
Performance Year Baseline Year
Vegetated grounds 133 Acres 80 Acres

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year July 1, 2012 June 30, 2013
Baseline Year July 1, 2005 June 30, 2006

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

This is the first year for which we have complete, accurate utility data, including water.

Water recycled/reused on campus, performance year:

Recycled/reused water withdrawn from off-campus sources, performance year:

A brief description of any water recovery and reuse systems employed by the institution:

Water recovery and reuse is illegal in the state of Colorado.

A brief description of any water metering and management systems employed by the institution:

Every separate building on campus is individually metered for water and wastewater consumption. These data are reported to the local utility, Colorado Springs Utilities, and we receive consumption and other data monthly on the utility bill. We monitor and analyze these data and adjust or repair our water systems, particular irrigation, as needed.

A brief description of any building retrofit practices employed by the institution, e.g. to install high efficiency plumbing fixtures and fittings:

All new building are built with low-flow faucets, dual-flush/low-use toilets, and low-flow shower heads where applicable.
The university has completed numerous water retrofit projects including dual flush 1.6/1.1gpf toilets (from 3.5), .125gallon urinals, .5gpm aerators, and 1.5 showerheads in housing.

A brief description of any policies or programs employed by the institution to replace appliances, equipment and systems with water-efficient alternatives:

A brief description of any water-efficient landscape design practices employed by the institution (e.g. xeriscaping):

UCCS has several locations across the campus that implement xeriscaping, including Science & Engineering, the roundabouts and several medians, the Recreation Center, and part of a demonstration garden recently added behind Centennial Hall. The grass that we have on campus is a low-water consumption fesque mix as well.

Approximately 60% of the UCCS campus is native landscaping. This is defined as native plant life allowed to grow mostly unassisted and unchecked. These areas enhance UCCS's unique image and dedication to living in cooperation with our unique environment. UCCS encourages low water landscapes to be used as much as possible when designing and constructing new buildings on campus. Some of our LEED buildings achieved the credit for no permanent irrigation, however, in this climate this is a difficult proposition to keep vegetation alive.
WE have also built several rain gardens to slow water and keep moisture on our vegetation for longer periods. We are on a clay bluff system, so issues of runoff are significant.
In the new Lane Center, water from the roof is channeled through the gardens and the parking lot is sloped so that water can run into the vegetated medians.

A brief description of any weather-informed irrigation technologies employed by the institution:

The campus purchased a Davis weather station to interface with the Rainbird irrigation system. This weather station is installed and being tested.

A brief description of other water conservation and efficiency strategies employed by the institution:

When possible due to weather and other conditions, we utilize reduced water-use irrigation strategies and low-water use plants and landscaping.

The website URL where information about the institution’s water conservation and efficiency initiatives is available:

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.