Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 60.83
Liaison Parker Long
Submission Date March 2, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Virginia Commonwealth University
IN-26: Innovation C

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Joseph Costa
Sustainability Projects and Program Coordinator
Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
Urban Forestry Initiative

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:

The Urban Forestry Initiative at VCU is a community-based research project designed to meet the community identified need of increasing urban tree canopy cover and the university identified need of producing carbon offsets in order to achieve the university's climate action goals. Phase one of the Urban Forestry Initiative includes a service learning course in which students are conducting a full inventory of existing street trees in a neighborhood adjacent to the VCU campus. Data collected in the street tree inventory will be used to calculate the baseline ecosystem services for trees in the neighborhood including carbon sequestration, air purification, stormwater management, and urban heat island mitigation. Vacant tree wells are also being identified in phase one. Phase two includes planting new trees in vacant tree wells as identified in phase one. Carbon sequestered by new trees planted will be counted as carbon offsets for VCU. New trees planted during phase two will be maintained in perpetuity via a partnership between VCU, the neighborhood association, and a local tree maintenance non-profit. This project provides measurable outcomes in the increased ecosystem services newly planted street trees provide for the neighborhood, carbon credits produced for VCU, and service hours provided by students and volunteers.


Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Curriculum
Research
Air & Climate

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :
The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:

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