Notre Dame publishes first annual sustainability report

Author: Rachel Novick

Office of Sustainability

The University of Notre Dame has released its first annual report summarizing University-wide achievements in sustainability.
Highlights of “Sustainability at Notre Dame 2008-2009” include the $4 million Energy Conservation Measures program, construction of the first campus buildings expecting LEED certification, a campus-wide shift to recycled-content paper, and the initiation of a comprehensive Game Day Recycling program.

The report describes initiatives undertaken in each of the seven focus areas of the Office of Sustainability: power generation, design and construction, waste reduction, transportation, procurement, food services, and water.

“This report clearly demonstrates that a great deal of significant work was accomplished during our sustainability program’s first year and that forward momentum was generated to accomplish even more in future years,” said Jim Lyphout, vice president for business operations.

“Sustainability successes have stemmed from the hard work of many individuals and departments,” added Erin Hafner, programs coordinator in the Office of Sustainability. “Our first annual report clearly illustrates the collaborative nature of Notre Dame’s sustainability efforts.”

The Office of Sustainability has been a catalyst for change during its first year of operation through researching best practices, creating educational programs, and initiating collaborative efforts across academic and operational disciplines.

The Energy Metrics section of the report illustrates Notre Dame’s performance in four key sustainability indicators: total carbon emissions from energy, energy intensity of campus buildings, carbon intensity of the power plant’s fuel mix, and total electricity usage. Notre Dame achieved reductions in all four indicators during 2008-09. These included a 7.5-percent reduction in total carbon emissions from energy usage and a 2.5-percent reduction in total electricity usage, the first such reduction since the late 1970s.

The report can be downloaded at the Office of Sustainability’s Web site or a paper copy may be requested by e-mailing