2013 Sustainability Progress Report and Greenhouse Gas Report Released

December 9, 2013

The 2013 progress report for Yale University’s Sustainability Strategic Plan 2010-2013 was recently published, following the completion of the strategic plan period in June 2013. The 2013 annual report on the university’s greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction commitment has also been released.

The Sustainability Strategic Plan 2010-2013 included 43 performance goals across 12 categories: campus building, design, and construction; waste management; transportation; food and dining; environmental health and safety; finance and business operations; procurement; cleaning and maintenance; energy and greenhouse gas emissions; water use; land management; and educating and engaging the Yale community.

According to the Progress Report, of the 43 performance goals set forth in the plan, 34 were achieved, 4 were not achieved, and 5 were revised.  A few notable achievements between 2010 and 2013 include the following:

  • 5% reduction in energy consumption;
  • 24% reduction in municipal solid waste (reduction of 1,481 tons);
  • composting of 95% of pre- and post-consumer food waste in residential dining halls and kitchens;
  • all new construction and comprehensive renovation projects followed green building standards and achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification at the Gold or Platinum levels;
  • Sustainable Procurement Standards developed for office supplies, electronics, cleaning supplies, furniture, paint, vehicles, appliances, and other commodities;
  • Green Cleaning Standards updated; and
  • plans developed for sustainable campus planning, stormwater management, water management; and sustainable transportation.

Since 2005, Yale has achieved a 16% total reduction in GHG emissions, despite a 12% increase in campus size during that timeframe. This represents progress towards the commitment made in 2005 to reduce Yale’s primary greenhouse gas emissions 43% below 2005 levels by 2020. 

The second Sustainability Strategic Plan 2013-2016, launched in October 2013, sets forth goals and related objectives in five areas: 1) energy and greenhouse gas emissions; 2) natural and built environment; 3) materials management; 4) food and well-being; and 5) sustainability leadership and capacity building. 

In a letter to the Yale Community dated August 2013, President Salovey wrote, “In the past decade, we have committed to increased sustainability in our campus operations… by addressing greenhouse gas emissions, energy and water conservation, land use policies, waste reduction, and building renovation and construction. The new strategic plan demonstrates that commitment and challenges us to do more.”

Read the Sustainability Strategic Plans and Progress Reports on our website:

Sustainability Strategic Plans and Progress Reports: http://sustainability.yale.edu/planning-progress

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reports: http://sustainability.yale.edu/planning-progress/areas-focus/emissions