Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.31
Liaison Natalie Walker
Submission Date Aug. 9, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Pennsylvania
IN-40: Sustainability Projects Fund

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.50 / 0.50 Natalie Walker
Sustainability Manager
Penn Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name of the institution’s sustainability projects fund:
Green Fund

Which of the following best describes the primary source of funding for the sustainability projects fund?:
Department driven

Year the institution’s sustainability projects fund was established:
2,009

A brief description of the institution’s sustainability projects fund:

Penn’s Green Fund welcomes ideas from students, faculty, and staff about ways to improve the University’s environmental performance and reduce campus emissions. Since 2009, this initiative of the Penn Sustainability Office, funded by the Division of Facilities and Real Estate Services, has seeded innovative ideas in environmental sustainability from members of the University community.

Proposed projects must support goals and objectives outlined in Penn’s Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0, a long-range strategy, launched in 2009 and updated in 2014 and 2019, to reduce the University’s carbon footprint and enhance its overall sustainability. Up to $30,000 can be awarded to fund the project.

All Green Fund projects are intended support new and innovative ideas that enhance sustainability on Penn's campus. Priority is given to projects that are:

+ Effective in educating or changing behavior at Penn
+ Enhancing overall campus sustainability
+ Applicable across campus
+ Focused directly on Penn’s campus, including the University City campus, New + Bolton Center, and the Morris Arboretum
+ Interdisciplinary, and engage multiple stakeholders within the Penn community
+ New and innovative ideas not previously awarded
+ Able to demonstrate a quantifiable return on investment (if applicable)


A brief description of the multi-stakeholder decision-making process used to determine which projects receive funding through the sustainability projects fund:

The Green Fund Review Committee comprises students, faculty, and staff across the university. Meetings are held monthly to review the applications; approvals are based on CSAP and Green Fund criteria.

The following items are included in the Green Fund application and are required for review:

+ A description of the project and its intended outcome, including criteria for evaluating its success in meeting its goals, and with an explanation of any independent funding secured by the applicants
+ Project participants, identifying project leadership and their responsibilities
+ The target beneficiary audience
+ A detailed timeline, including a start date and anticipated implementation schedule
+ Specific cost and savings estimates, and
+ A sponsorship letter, expressing support for the project from the sponsoring department chair and/or center head.


Website URL where information about the sustainability projects fund is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

The University of Pennsylvania is a major research institution, with over 3,000 degrees granted annually from twelve professional and academic schools at the Bachelor's, Master's, and Doctorate levels. Penn is committed to reducing emissions and energy use, as stated in the 2019 "Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0". This submission documents Penn's efforts during the FY19/20 year and compares them to the FY09 baseline year which corresponds with the University's "Climate and Sustainability Action Plan. 3.0". The submission relies on information related to the main, academic, West Philadelphia campus, but to more fully document efforts across the Penn system, information related to the Morris Arboretum and New Bolton has also been referenced and noted as outside the boundary in descriptions. The information is used to enrich examples of University efforts and is not intended to be the primary justification for credits. The responses for each of the questions and sub-questions are drawn from University materials, both internal and public documents. Each section notes the website where the information can be found.

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.