Public Affairs, The California State University

Learning from the Best

CSU Fullerton, Student Housing Phase III, 2013 Best Practice Award recipient for Overall Sustainable Design
CSU Fullerton, Student Housing Phase III, 2013 Best Practice Award recipient for Overall Sustainable Design

Eight California State University programs and projects have been selected for Higher Education Energy Efficiency and Sustainability Best Practice Awards. The statewide higher education awards are meant to highlight achievements, showcase specific sustainable models and facilitate the transfer of best practices between campuses.

The CSU awardees for 2013 include the following:

  • Overall Sustainable Design: CSU Fullerton, Student Housing Phase III
  • HVAC Design/Retrofit: CSU Stanislaus, Chilled and Hot Water Distribution Systems and Central Plant Optimization
  • Lighting Design/Retrofit: CSU Fullerton, Campuswide Lighting Project
  • Monitoring-Based Commissioning: CSU Long Beach, University Music Center
  • Student Energy Efficiency Program: San Diego State, Lighting Efficiency Campaign
  • Student Sustainability Program: Cal Poly Pomona, Sustainability Course Guide
  • Sustainability Innovations: CSU Monterey Bay, TRIPWise and Campus Transportation
  • Communicating Sustainability: Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, Sustainability Educational Outreach

April 12 announcement of CSU and University of California awardees

The Best Practices Awards are sponsored by the UC/CSU/IOU Energy Efficiency Partnership, a collaboration between the universities and the state’s four large investor-owned utilities.

The Communicating Sustainability category is new this year, corresponding to a focus on expanding the reach of the sustainability message. Programs at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and UC Davis will take the first-ever awards in this category back to their campuses.

Cal Poly Biennial Progress Report, 2012Cal Poly San Luis Obispo’s Sustainability Educational Outreach is composed of several complementing initiatives encompassing facilities, academics and community service. A biennial report highlights Cal Poly’s progress toward sustainability goals in the areas of policy, energy use, water resources, transportation, recycling, greenhouse gas emissions, land use and development, and creating a more sustainable community. The campus also greatly broadened the reach of its sustainability efforts through two sustainability mascots – Mr. Eco and Poly the Polar Bear. Through rap music, “Mr. Eco” educates and inspires students of all ages to consider the impact of their actions on the global environment. Poly the Polar Bear engages students to participate in the campus energy competitions by educating them on the effects of climate change.

While this year’s awardees celebrate, many lessons are still being learned from the awardees of past years. The Green Building Research Center prepared case studies for the 2012 awardees, including five CSU campuses: Cal Maritime, San Diego, Chico, San Marcos and San Luis Obispo.

Best Practice Awards are formally recognized during the California Higher Education Sustainability Conference. The conference is an opportunity for students, faculty and staff from the CSU, UC and the California Community Colleges – as well as private colleges, universities and other partners – to share progress and learn from each other. The conference will be held at UC Santa Barbara starting June 23, 2013.