Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.38
Liaison Olivia Shehan
Submission Date Nov. 13, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Wellesley College
OP-10: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
2.00 / 2.00 Dorothea Von Herder
Sustainability Coordinator
Facilites
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of the legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance:

Wellesley College has multiple wetland habitats that are protected by the College and state law. Large amounts of lake and shoreline bordering Lake Waban is undeveloped and is wildlife habitat. There is also a vernal pool on the golf course. Charles River Watershed.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species (including migratory species) with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodologies used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas (including most recent year assessed) and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

We conduct routine inspections by professional landscape management staff, who regularly walk through and assess our natural areas for health and possible risk. The Army Corps of Engineers also does occasional inspections. We continually monitor major invasive species such as Phragmites, Purple Loosestrife and European Alder.


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

We have identified our wetland habitats as environmentally sensitive and important for preservation as a vital habitat for various species; these wetlands are under legal protection. Our science center meadow, golf course vernal pool, and paint shop pond have also been identified as sensitive to invading species and contamination, but important for residing species, and are regularly assessed as well. Endangered and vulnerable species that have been identified on campus include: milkweed, American Chestnut as well as others.


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

By virtue of Massachusetts Conservation Laws, we have a 100 foot buffer zone around the lake and wetlands as well as 300 foot buffer around moving bodies of water that limits disturbance among natural habitats. We additionally have worked to remediate contaminated areas at the Paint Shop Pond and Alumnae Valley. These areas are especially monitored and keeping a watchful eye on these sensitive habitats is a long-term as well as short-term responsibility for us; Paint Shop Pond was one of the most contaminated sites in MA, the College has spent millions of dollars to clean this up, reestablish wetlands, and all contaminated soils which could not be cleaned up where treated and placed in an engineered barrier, which is carefully monitored, including groundwater testing. In Alumnae Valley, which we restored from a surface parking lot, to a completely renovated landscape including the addition of wetlands.


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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