Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 61.15
Liaison Ashley Woolman
Submission Date April 8, 2022

STARS v2.2

Western Colorado University
OP-21: Water Use

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 5.00 / 5.00 Ashley Woolman
Sustainability Coordinator
Facilities Services
"---" 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 23,370,631 Gallons 45,715,425 Gallons

Potable water use:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use 23,370,631 Gallons 45,715,425 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, 2006 June 30, 2007

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

They were the earliest records I could find and it coincides with the adoption of the ACUPCC and our climate action plan. We have records for potable water, but not for non-potable water.


Figures needed to determine "Weighted Campus Users":
Performance Year Baseline Year
Number of students resident on-site 1,026 823
Number of employees resident on-site 5 4
Number of other individuals resident on-site 0 0
Total full-time equivalent student enrollment 2,315 1,914
Full-time equivalent of employees 350 302
Full-time equivalent of students enrolled exclusively in distance education 238 112
Weighted campus users 2,078 1,784.75

Potable water use per weighted campus user:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per weighted campus user 11,246.69 Gallons 25,614.47 Gallons

Percentage reduction in potable water use per weighted campus user from baseline:
56.09

Gross floor area of building space:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area 1,110,685 Gross Square Feet 1,036,492 Gross Square Feet

Potable water use per unit of floor area:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Potable water use per unit of floor area 21.04 Gallons / GSF 44.11 Gallons / GSF

Percentage reduction in potable water use per unit of floor area from baseline:
52.29

Area of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Vegetated grounds 90 Acres 100 Acres

Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds 259,673.68 Gallons / Acre 457,154.25 Gallons / Acre

Percentage reduction in total water withdrawal per unit of vegetated grounds from baseline:
43.20

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

Students have conducted a dorm water use competition to raise awareness of water use trends. Western hosts a "Headwaters" course every summer/fall that discusses Colorado water issues. A new sign highlighting our headwaters, the multi-year drought, and water issues across the West is being placed in between the library and Kelley hall.


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

Western's Grounds Department uses non-potable ditch water to irrigate campus lawns. We "own" part of the rights to the water along with several adjacent ranchers/landowners.


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

In 2009, Western had Ameresco conduct an audit of campus. We replaced most of our fixtures (toilets, showers, sinks) with low flow alternatives between 2009-2011. Also, all new construction and renovations are build to LEED Gold standards, which incorporates low flow fixtures and high efficiency boilers, etc.


Website URL where information about the institution’s water conservation and efficiency efforts is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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Western's Grounds Dept uses non-potable ditch water to irrigate campus lawns. We "own" part of the rights to the water along with several adjacent ranchers/landowners. No data has been collected on how much water is used for irrigating lawns and playing fields.

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.