Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 57.87
Liaison Elias Platte-Bermeo
Submission Date July 29, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Southern California
OP-21: Water Use

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.76 / 6.00 Elias Platte-Bermeo
Sustainability Program Assistant
Office of Sustainability
"---" 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 Aqueduct Water Risk Atlas:
High

Total water withdrawal (potable and non-potable combined):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal 370,141,375 Gallons 359,977,482 Gallons

Potable water use:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use 370,141,375 Gallons 359,977,482 Gallons

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Period July 1, 2018 June 30, 2019
Baseline Period July 1, 2013 June 30, 2014

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

The first USC Water Conservation Task Force issued its report in late 2015. The previous year, FY 2014 data was identified as the baseline for conservation moving forward as it coincides with USC's first formal greenhouse gas inventory.


Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users":
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 9,150 6,960
Number of employees resident on-site 50 40
Number of other individuals resident on-site 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 43,674 37,891
Full-time equivalent of employees 14,912 13,189
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 6,707 4,120
Weighted campus users 41,209.25 36,970

Potable water use per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per weighted campus user 8,982.00 Gallons 9,737.02 Gallons

Percentage reduction in potable water use per weighted campus user from baseline:
7.75

Gross floor area of building space:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area 16,761,697 Gross Square Feet 13,470,093 Gross Square Feet

Potable water use per unit of floor area:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per unit of floor area 22.08 Gallons / GSF 26.72 Gallons / GSF

Percentage reduction in potable water use per unit of floor area from baseline:
17.37

Area of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Vegetated grounds 51.78 Acres 49.75 Acres

Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds 7,148,346.37 Gallons / Acre 7,235,728.28 Gallons / Acre

Percentage reduction in total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds from baseline:
1.21

A brief description of the institution's water-related behavior change initiatives:

To encourage students living on campus to use water more efficiently, USC Housing installed shower timers in all university owned apartments and suite style bathrooms. Any student can request a shower timer from the Housing office. In addition, there are water conservation signage and stickers posted around student housing locations. These cover tips regarding shorter showers, toilet flushes and laundry. In order to better quantify water usage by building, USC has installed 17 sub-meters at several buildings on the UPC campus and is currently in Phase 2 of the project installing 27 additional sub-meters. More building specific data will help USC inform and educate the building users and would allow for conservation competitions between buildings similar to what USC has done on the energy side.


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

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to replace plumbing fixtures, fittings, appliances, equipment, and systems with water-efficient alternatives:

Since 2015, USC Housing has replaced approximately 6,800 old water fixtures with newer low flow models across housing buildings at UPC campus. In 2020, USC started a project to relace 1,650 old faucets with new low flow fixtures in non-housing buildings at both UPC and HSC campuses. As of March 2021, approximately 1,500 faucets across 112 buildings have been replaced.


Website URL where information about the institution’s water conservation and efficiency efforts is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data for "area of vegetated grounds" covers the University Park Campus, Health Sciences Campus, Catalina Campus, and athletic fields.

See additional documentation for more information.

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.