Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 53.92
Liaison Mat Thijssen
Submission Date Oct. 26, 2021

STARS v2.2

University of Waterloo
OP-9: Landscape Management

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 2.00 Mat Thijssen
Sustainability Manager
Sustainability Office
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total campus area:
455.27 Hectares

Figures required to calculate the total area of managed grounds:
Area (double-counting is not allowed)
Area managed organically, without the use of inorganic fertilizers and chemical pesticides, fungicides and herbicides 0 Hectares
Area managed in accordance with an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program that uses selected chemicals only when needed 194 Hectares
Area managed using conventional, chemical-based landscape management practices 0 Hectares
Total area of managed grounds 194 Hectares

A brief description of any land excluded from the area of managed grounds:

Waterloo has a significant percentage of its landholdings that are managed or maintained by other parties and are not under the direct control of the grounds team, who actively manages Waterloo’s grounds. These include Waterloo’s building footprint, parking lots, service areas, Affiliated and Federated Institutions of Waterloo, roadways, walkways, significant portions of Waterloo’s Northwest Campus, which are vacant, large portions of Waterloo’s Environmental Reserve, and privately owned buildings within the Research and Technology Park. In total, these are approximately 645 acres that are not directly managed by the institution or would not be part of the grounds management program

Percentage of grounds managed organically:

A brief description of the organic landscape management program:

Percentage of grounds managed in accordance with an IPM program:

A copy of the IPM plan or program:

A brief description of the IPM program:

Plant Operations Grounds division monitors pests and other invasive species or diseases (i.e. funguses) across University managed lands. It has eliminated all blanket application of chemical pesticides and herbicides since 1998. Where there are species that need to be controlled, such as buckthorn and periwinkle, which are invasive, targeted application of chemicals are applied. Weeds across campus grounds are treated using a hot water solution. While there is not a formal IPM program documented, all IPM principles are followed as standard practice and chemical pesticide and herbicide use has been largely eliminated. Plant Operations also plants native species with inherent resistance to pests in order to minimize need for application or risk of pest/infection.

A brief description of the institution's approach to plant stewardship:

Plant Operations has established a native tree planting list since 1997, which continues to be used for all tree selections. Waterloo has a campus woodlot which is actively used as a living laboratory for invasive species management from ecology classes. Plant Operations also manages buckthorn and periwinkle in some locations, poison ivy in others. This is generally a monitoring approach and spray/remove as needed, but only in targeted areas.

A brief description of the institution's approach to hydrology and water use:

The Laurel Creek winds through Waterloo’s North Campus and South Campus. This natural water source is overseen by the Grand River Conservation Authority. Waterloo has supported rehabilitation efforts by naturalizing the shoreline of the creek, which is also used as a living laboratory for water quality sampling and species identification in academic courses. Waterloo has three permeable pavement sites across campus to promote infiltration, and has eliminated most surface watering with the exception of annual flower planters.

A brief description of the institution's approach to landscape materials management and waste minimization:

Leaf, grass, and brush clippings are composted on-site using a large windrow. In addition, wood waste from damaged tree limbs, cut-down trees, or untreated wood from skids and pallets are sent through a wood chipper on site and utilized as mulch for campus gardens.

A brief description of the institution's approach to energy-efficient landscape design:

A brief description of other sustainable landscape management practices employed by the institution:

Waterloo’s grounds staff have received Smart About Salt certification, administered by Landscape Ontario. The goal of the certification is to help operators better understand ways to minimize salt use while maintaining safe conditions.

Website URL where information about the institution’s sustainable landscape management program is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

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.