Campus Profile: University of California Davis – Sierra Club’s Coolest School

University of California at Davis arboretum, Davis, California

Named Sierra Magazine’s “Coolest School” the University of California Davis is well known for sustainability. Check out the following Sierra Club video featuring UC Davis.

In bestowing the “Coolest School” ranking, Sierra Magazine praised UC Davis for establishing rigorous green purchasing standards; diverting nearly 70 percent of campus trash from landfills; and offering an extensive transportation system that includes the student-run Unitrans bus service, which serves the campus and adjoining city with 49 natural-gas-powered buses that carry 21,000 riders a day, 42 miles of bike paths and more than 20,000 bicycle parking spaces.

Ambitious and forward thinking, UC Davis has transformed their campus. Check out these additional accomplishments:

  • A Climate Action Plan that has reduced campus greenhouse gas emissions below year 2000 levels with the expectation of reaching year 1990 levels by 2020.
  • A $39 million Smart Lighting Initiative that is on track to reduce campus electrical use by 60 percent by 2015, saving $3 million on the annual electricity bill. In June, UC Davis became the first campus in the nation to introduce adaptive, networked exterior lighting, a project that alone will save $100,000 annually in electricity costs.
  • Planning that helps 85 percent of students and 46 percent of employees to use sustainable transportation (walking, bicycling, carpooling, riding a bus or a train), as their primary means of commuting to and getting around on campus.
  • Aggressive recycling, composting and reuse efforts that in 2011 prevented 64 percent of campus waste from entering landfills annually. Aggie Stadium has won the EPA’s Wastewise Game Day Challenge diversion rate championship for the past two years. In 2011, the stadium diverted more than 93 percent of its waste on challenge day. Throughout the year, the stadium prevents about 80 percent of its waste from entering landfills.
  • The campus spends more than 20 percent of its $5.6 million food budget for residential dining services on local products, buys organic items such as poultry and grains, and sources olive oil and tomatoes from campus farms.

Learn more about UC Davis and their commitment to sustainability at

Source: UC Davis


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