Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 58.21
Liaison Jeannie Matheison
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Idaho
OP-22: Water Use

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.94 / 4.00 Elmer Johnson
Water System Manager
"---" 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’s Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas:
Low to Medium

Total water use (potable and non-potable combined):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water use --- 329,514,108 Gallons

Potable water use:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use 140,683,303 Gallons 247,708,636 Gallons

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year Jan. 1, 2018 Dec. 31, 2018
Baseline Year Jan. 1, 2005 Dec. 31, 2005

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

The water use baseline, 2005, was adopted as part of the University of Idaho's submission to the American College and University Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) and the university's Climate Action Plan published in 2010.

The 2005 Energy Policy Act established conservation goals and objectives for energy and water. UI has been monitoring and actively participating in water conservation since 1955. In 1979, a water reclamation program was initiated with the aim of reducing university dependence on the Palouse Basin Aquifer. UI and the Palouse Basin Aquifer Committee are seeking alternative water sources and preserving local water resources for future generations.

Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users":
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 3,466 3,433
Number of employees resident on-site 0 0
Number of other individuals resident on-site and/or staffed hospital beds 250 250
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 8,286.90 8,921.40
Full-time equivalent of employees (staff + faculty) 1,406 1,883
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 0 0
Weighted campus users 8,386.18 9,211.55

Potable water use per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per weighted campus user 16,775.62 Gallons 26,891.09 Gallons

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

Gross floor area of building space:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area 4,237,773 Gross Square Feet 4,135,214 Gross Square Feet

Potable water use per unit of floor area:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per unit of floor area 33.20 Gallons / GSF 59.90 Gallons / GSF

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

Does the institution wish to pursue Part 3 of this credit? (reductions in total water use per acre/hectare of vegetated grounds):

Area of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Vegetated grounds 468.87 Acres 468.87 Acres

Total water use (potable + non-potable) per unit of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water use per unit of vegetated grounds 0 Gallons / Acre 702,783.52 Gallons / Acre

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

A brief description of the institution's water-related behavior change initiatives, e.g. initiatives to shift individual attitudes and practices such as signage and competitions:

Sample of water awareness and behavioral initiatives:
The University of Idaho has been active member of the Palouse Basin Aquifer Committee (PBAC) since 1976. This multi-jurisdictional committee was established "to ensure a long-term, quality water supply for the Palouse Basin region".

Water-related behavior change initiatives hosted by the Sustainability Center and many partners:
-Free stainless steel water bottles to incoming freshmen to promote a culture of conservation.

-There is an ongoing effort to install water bottle refill stations in new buildings, remodels, and many retrofits have been funded by student-led grant projects.

-The Food For Thought Film Committee, a campus and community partnership, hosts film screenings and events to raise awareness of water-related issues.

-Student volunteers install educational medallions on campus storm drains to discourage the pouring of harmful liquids directly into the local creek.

-Greek & Residence Hall Water Conservation Challenges promote behavior change and water conservation awareness.

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

Non-potable water comes from the City of Moscow Sewage Treatment Plant and from Aquaculture Labs discharge water. The University of Idaho irrigates over 183 acres with reclaimed, non-potable water, which saved 94 million gallons from the aquifer in 2018.

Ongoing initiatives:
-Expand the use of non-potable irrigation water.
-Expand the use of automated irrigation systems, especially with non-potable water, to reduce water consumption.
-Ongoing efforts to improve steam condensate return systems.

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to replace plumbing fixtures, fittings, appliances, equipment, and systems with water-efficient alternatives (e.g. building retrofits):

University of Idaho adopted and implemented construction standards for the installation of low flow fixtures on new construction and/or replacement remodels. In addition, we have policies in place which do not allow equipment that requires water for cooling purposes.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data support provided by Marc Compton Mechanical Engineer, Facilities--Utilities and Engineering Services

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.