The University explores and exemplifies all aspects of economic, environmental, and social sustainability.
We don’t inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.
UBC recognizes that to meet society’s needs without compromising those of future generations requires the best efforts of the brightest minds in every field—ecological, economic, and social.
Already a global sustainability leader, the University builds its international reputation by taking the lead at home: in Vancouver and the Okanagan, UBC links academic, research, and operational sustainability to become a living laboratory.
Prudent with financial resources and mindful of its mandate to society, UBC supports those initiatives that will ensure the long-term resilience of the University and its ability to serve for generations to come.
The University creates cost-neutral ways to include sustainability teaching and learning in and across all disciplines, and encourages students, staff, and faculty to carry daily sustainability practices out beyond the gates.
In class, in campus plans, in community development, and in partnerships both local and global, UBC exemplifies the hope that we can leave behind us a world worthy of our children.
- Strengthen the strategic and financial planning culture at the faculty and unit level
- Provide a solid financial foundation for long-term success through continuous improvement and active revenue management.
- A balanced budget is in place
- The University achieved a credit rating of Aa1 from Moody’s and AA+ from Standard and Poor’s, giving UBC the highest credit rating among Canadian Universities
- Continued to drive efficiencies in all administrative and academic units. Current examples include the delivery of redesigned, simplified and automated payment and procurement services for both campuses, the consolidation of Library branches combined with system-wide investments in digital collections and in the BC Integrated Research Library for storage and digitization of last copies
- Continued to invest in Place and Promise priorities despite the challenging economic context, both on the teaching side (Flexible Learning initiative, set-up one an international college that will enrich the student population and provide financial stability to the institution) and on the research side in significant priority areas
- Fundraising campaign at the end of 2012/13 saw $1.1 billion raised to date, with $213.2m raised this year
- Demonstrate leading edge solutions by deploying innovative technologies and testing social acceptance; and by leveraging the municipal size of the campus and of UTown@UBC
- Make UBC an agent of change through innovation, integration, demonstration and inspiration
- A transit report was released in February that highlighted the importance and value of the UBC/Broadway corridor, and its contributions to education, research and innovation
- University as a Living Lab projects continue to increase with 16 initiatives underway, including wireless electric vehicle charging stations and an electro-chemical energy storage that evaluates and demonstrates the integration of energy storage into UBC’s community electrical grid
- The Bioenergy Research and Demonstration Facility, a key project of UBC’s Climate Action Plan and designed to eliminate 9 per cent of campus greenhouse gas emissions opened in September 2012.
- As a test-bed for innovation, the Centre for Interactive Research on Sustainability was used in multiple studies including by Psychology students studying the potential to “design in” environmental conscientiousness in a building and Engineering students in the Sustainable Building Science Program analyzing and modeling energy systems
- UBC received the prestigious Excellence in Integration Award from the International Sustainable Campuses Network, recognizing efforts to integrate operational and academic sustainability across campus-- one of over 15 sustainability awards received in 2012/13, including APPA’s inaugural Sustainability Award in Facilities Management and an Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) award for the implementation of UBC’s Climate Action Plan.
- Over 75 SEEDS projects engaged 480-plus students (who receive course credit), staff and faculty in developing and implementing projects—including a Clean Energy Engineering project that studied campus water usage--to address real-life campus sustainability challenges.
- In its role as an Agent of Change, UBC brought together 65 international sustainability thought leaders and practitioners in an inaugural Regenerative Neighbourhoods Summit to grapple with the question: To what degree can human activities associated with the built environment lead to improvement in both ecological integrity and human quality of life?
- Meet the social needs of faculty, staff and students, from local and affordable housing, to childcare and transportation.
- Expand the vibrant, sustainable and affordable U-Town@UBC Community
- Physically deliver “Place of Mind” throughout the Okanagan and Vancouver campuses by weaving outstanding academic and cultural infrastructure into an inviting and inspiring public realm
- Continued progress in shifting transportation choices to transit – 2012 fall status update showed 55% of all trips to campus are on transit
- Completed joint KPMG study on “The UBC-Broadway Corridor – Unlocking the Economic Potential” with the City of Vancouver as part of on-going action to obtain a rail rapid transit line to UBC. Report confirms importance of UBC’s economic contribution to the corridor and region and the need for rail rapid transit to fully unlock this potential
- Completed Housing Action Plan for the Vancouver Campus that will deliver more housing choice and affordability for faculty, staff and students
- Concluded the Gage South “Area Under Review” planning process with adoption of amendments to the Land Use Plan by the Minister - will provide student housing in the Gage South area and accommodate neighbourhood housing in alternative locations to locations to ensure sufficient population and density to achieve a sustainable community and to preserve the endowment
- New U Hill Secondary School opened in January 2013 in Wesbrook Place neighbourhood
- Completed Infrastructure improvements:
- Vancouver Campus
- Public Realm – Pedestrianization of Main Mall and Memorial Drive; University Boulevard Trolley Loop
- Earth Sciences Building (2012)
- Pharmacy (2012)
- Skatepark – jointly with the UNA- will open this spring
- Okanagan Campus
- Substantial completion of the East-West Ceremonial Promenade, including a gathering space and view point at the eastern terminus of the walkway
- Vancouver Campus