Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 54.70
Liaison Alexi Lamm
Submission Date Oct. 31, 2019

STARS v2.2

Utah State University
OP-21: Water Use

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 5.00 / 5.00 Jamie Pearce
Water Quality Engineer
Facilities
"---" 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:
Medium to High

Total water withdrawal (potable and non-potable combined):
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal 276,125,000 Gallons 418,834,000 Gallons

Potable water use:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use 151,552,000 Gallons 294,261,000 Gallons

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or three-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Period July 1, 2017 June 30, 2018
Baseline Period July 1, 2008 June 30, 2009

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

We originally adopted 2007 since it is the year USU became a signatory to the ACUPCC. Because of mistakes in previous metering data, we changed the baseline year to FY 2009 rather than FY 2007. Starting with FY 2008, we had over a year’s worth of water meter data recorded in our computer program, the same program that we use today. Additionally, we had full access to housing metering records starting with FY 2009. On top of this, we have included outlying buildings on main campus that are on the city’s water system that have separate water meters. Previously there had been some mistakes in the water usage totals because some meters had been counted twice (water system production meters and individual building meters). This was corrected with the new reported numbers by using production meters only (or individual building meters on the city’s water system).


Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users":
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 3,773 2,200
Number of employees resident on-site 93 100
Number of other individuals resident on-site 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 16,897 14,211
Full-time equivalent of employees 2,856 2,405
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 1,076 279
Weighted campus users 14,974.25 12,827.75

Potable water use per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per weighted campus user 10,120.84 Gallons 22,939.41 Gallons

Percentage reduction in potable water use per weighted campus user from baseline:
55.88

Gross floor area of building space:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area 6,401,505 Gross Square Feet 5,553,150 Gross Square Feet

Potable water use per unit of floor area:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per unit of floor area 23.67 Gallons / GSF 52.99 Gallons / GSF

Percentage reduction in potable water use per unit of floor area from baseline:
55.32

Area of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Vegetated grounds 470 Acres 480 Acres

Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds 587,500 Gallons / Acre 872,570.83 Gallons / Acre

Percentage reduction in total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds from baseline:
32.67

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

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

Untreated water is used for irrigation.


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

Website URL where information about the institution’s water conservation and efficiency efforts is available:
---

Additional documentation to support the submission:

We originally adopted 2007 since it is the year USU became a signatory to the ACUPCC. Because of mistakes in previous metering data, we changed the baseline year to FY 2009 rather than FY 2007. Starting with FY 2008, we had over a year’s worth of water meter data recorded in our computer program, the same program that we use today. Additionally, we had full access to housing metering records starting with FY 2009. On top of this, we have included outlying buildings on main campus that are on the city’s water system that have separate water meters. Previously there had been some mistakes in the water usage totals because some meters had been counted twice (water system production meters and individual building meters). This was corrected with the new reported numbers by using production meters on university connected buildings and individual building meters on the city’s water system.

The data still shows a significant reduction in water use between FY 2009 and FY 2018. We attribute the reduction to the university's monitoring, tracking, and comparing water usage each month to previous months and years to determine potential leaks and investigating unusual meter readings/usage. The university also uses other methods of leak detection. Replacement of old water lines is another improvement to the system and in preventing/reducing leaks. The rocky soil under central campus can make leaks difficult to detect without active monitoring. Finally, student housing in a trailer court was removed. It had high water usage (80,180 kgal recorded in FY 2009) and leaks. For comparison, Aggie Village, which was also university-run family housing, used 41,871 kgal in the same time period.

Other large reductions are also visible also. The south water system and CEP meter reductions mean USU is pulling less from the well, reservoir pump house, and from city systems. Some reductions are more difficult to explain, like water lab. It is likely a result of the types of experiments being run there.

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.