Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 45.27
Liaison Meghna Tare
Submission Date July 12, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Texas at Arlington
PA-1: Sustainability Coordination

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Meghna Tare
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution have at least one sustainability committee, office, and/or officer that focuses on sustainability broadly and covers the entire institution?:

A brief description of the activities and substantive accomplishments of the committee(s), office(s), and/or officer(s) during the previous three years:

Developing a GRI report
The University Sustainability Committee used two frameworks
to support the evaluation of UT Arlington’s key impacts and
to determine report topics: the GRI Reporting Framework,
the most widely used standard for sustainability reporting
worldwide; and AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment
& Rating System™ (STARS), a transparent, self-reporting
framework for colleges and universities to measure their
sustainability performance. UT Arlington’s first STARS
submission in January 2011 received a bronze rating. STARS
submissions are available at https://stars.aashe.org.
The committee identified an initial set of goals that focus on
the University’s key environmental impacts and align with and
support the University’s Strategic Plan and the Campus Master
Plan, as described in the Managing Our Impacts section on page
18. The impacts, action plans, and performance in these areas are
the focus of this report. In addition, the committee performed
an initial review of economic and social aspects in relation to
University priorities and considered these aspects alongside
external feedback to determine the scope of topics in this report.
For future sustainability reports, we will incorporate a more
formal process for determining material sustainability topics.

Does the institution have at least one sustainability committee?:

The charter or mission statement of the committee(s) or a brief description of each committee's purview and activities:

The University Sustainability Committee at The University of Texas at Arlington develops and recommends policies and strategies to advance the University's commitment to help meet today's serious environment challenges. By setting the standard and serving as a role model, the University strives to promote environmental awareness and encourage conservation of resources.

A successful endeavor to transition to a sustainable or green campus involves four aspects of the university community—the administration, academic departments (students and faculty), the university research effort, and the local community.

The on-going purpose of the University Sustainability Committee (USC) is to propose means by which the University can bring faculty, staff, students and the entire community together to meet or surpass environmental standards, conserve resources, and minimize waste. In addition, the committee reviews and benchmarks efforts made by higher education peers in order to propose a course of action for administrative decisions at The University of Texas at Arlington.

The USC is divided into functional work groups addressing opportunities for advancing and promoting sustainability in several areas, including facilities management, curricula, research, and public awareness. Use the menu on the left to view information on the current work groups.

Members of each committee, including affiliations and role (e.g. staff, student, or faculty):

Appointed Members who are chairs of the various work groups:
1) Building and Development- Bill Poole, Office of Facilities Management
2) Administration and Outreach- Megan Topham- Director of Operations, Ft.Worth Santa Fe Campus
3) Climate- Meghna Tare, Director, Office of Sustainability
4) Curriculum, Research, and Community Engagement- Jim Grover, Associate Professor, Department of Biology
5) Dining Services- Sharon Carey, Director, Special Event Facilities
6) Energy and Water- Larry Harrison, Director, Office of Facilities Management
7) Landscape and Habitat- David Hopman, Associate Professor and Landscape Architect, School of Architecture
8) Management Systems- Meghna Tare, Director, Office of Sustainability
9) Purchasing- Megan Topham, Director of Operations, Ft.Worth Santa Fe Campus
10) Transportation- Jeff Johnson, Director, Office of Facilities Management
11) Waste Reduction- Becky Valentich- Recycling Coordinator, Office of Sustainability

The website URL where information about the sustainability committee(s) is available:
Does the institution have at least one sustainability office that includes more than 1 full-time equivalent (FTE) employee?:

A brief description of each sustainability office:

The Office of Sustainability at the University of Texas at Arlington aspires to provide the framework for environmental stewardship, natural resource conservation, emissions reductions, and sustainability. The office will act as a conduit to support and promote the University's environmental commitments and policies. In addition to promoting the University's environmental policy, the Office of Sustainability is committed to enhancing awareness and understanding of the principles of sustainability throughout the University community. This awareness will help UT Arlington students, staff, and faculty to incorporate green practices and procedures within all areas and aspects of the University. The Office of Sustainability is concerned with the health and safety of the University community as well as with the health of the environment. This office is focused on the continual implementation of programs and initiatives that not only create a sustainable campus, but improves the quality of campus life in general. The Office of Sustainability also helps to develop and promote academic programs, scholarship, research, service learning, and educational events focused on environmental and sustainability studies.

In addition to on campus activities, the Office of Sustainability at The University of Texas at Arlington remains steadfast in maintaining direct involvement within local, regional, national, and international organizations and programs which promote environmental sustainability. Beyond compliance with these sustainable agencies, the office actively pursues outreach opportunities to expand its impact beyond the physical boundaries of UT Arlington.

Aligned with the UT Arlington core values of academics, community, and social responsibility, the Office of Sustainability provides innovative initiatives, projects, programs, campaigns, educational services, group activities, and outreach opportunities. The various activities aspire to facilitate a culture of sustainability on campus, regionally and nationally that will position the university as a leader in sustainability.

Full-time equivalent (FTE) of people employed in the sustainability office(s):

The website URL where information about the sustainability office(s) is available:
Does the institution have at least one sustainability officer?:

Name and title of each sustainability officer:
Meghna Tare

A brief description of each sustainability officer position:

• Initiate and coordinate programs related to the following: utility efficiency and management, energy efficiency and conservation, carbon footprint reduction, recycling and waste reduction, toxics minimization, campus master planning, sustainable building design and construction (e.g. Green Building Council, LEED), transportation, environmentally preferable purchasing, program management and metrics, and curriculum development.
• Identify performance improvement opportunities, build long term business relationships with new agencies and clients
• Develop technical reports like STARS, climate action plan/sustainability action plan
• Working member of NCTCOG (North Central Texas Council of Governments), Region 6 EPA, City of Arlington, Chamber of commerce, Vision North Texas, North Texas Clean Air Coalition, etc
• Develop short term and long term strategic plans, recommending policy and organizational changes needed to advance sustainability initiatives.
• Conduct research on relevant issues and best practices, assemble business plans (when necessary), develop and implement program policies and procedures.
• Perform sustainability-related outreach to UTA students, faculty, and staff as well as the wider Arlington and North Texas community.
• Department’s annual operating budget
• Apply for grants and other external funding opportunities.
• Update executive management and communications/media relations on program accomplishments (to include producing an annual report), attend conferences, plan and attend local events, and make program presentations.
• Provide general supervision, guidance, and direction to the University’s Sustainability Committee

The website URL where information about the sustainability officer(s) is available:
Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

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 or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.