Projects Funded in 2017-2018

Carson College

Allocated Funds: $200

This project has been awarded a Carbon Fund grant to instal a worm bin in the Rachel Carson main office. This project will establish a staff / faculty specific compost disposal unit that would require minimal maintenance and help remedy ongoing food waste issues.

Gas Metering Project

Allocated Funds: $500

The goal of this project is to modernize the current gas metering system in order to reduce the cost of acquiring gas consumption data for the UCSC Energy department. Furthermore, the project hopes that the constant monitoring of gas usage will lead to increased safety levels and reduced gas consumption. The project intends to achieve this goal by creating a system that collects hourly readings that are easily accessible to their client (UCSC Energy Department staff).



Solvent Purification System

Allocated Funds: $2,427

The current solvent purification system in the Physical Sciences Building has been out of commission since 2015. This has led labs to result in using conventional solvent purification practices that require intensive energy and water usage, produce waste that could be avoided, and creates an extremely dangerous environment for lab members.The refurbishment of the solvent purification system proposes to purchase new filtration material for the solvent purification system which targets to avoid all water and electricity use for Dimethylformamide, the use of calcium hydride, a dangerous material, save 100 amber bottles per year, and save 20 liters of solvent that is otherwise being discarded. Not only will it ensure a greener path for research but a far more safer environment for labs.

Green Building Council LEED Online

Allocated Funds: $3,500

The Carbon Fund has awarded $3,500 to the Green Building Work Group to upgrade the campus membership from Silver to Gold for the US Green Building Council.  Gold membership provides access for ALL campus staff, faculty and students to over 1,000 online trainings and webinars on hundreds of topics related to green building, including: exam preparation courses for those that want to become LEED accredited, detailed training on how to apply the new LEED V4 protocol, net zero buildings and the Living Building Challenge.  

Engineers Without Borders' Solar Energy Allocation System

Allocated Funds: $2,496

This project aims for Engineers Without Borders-UCSC to develop an off-grid, residential solar power package that can easily be deployed to bring power to developing and post-disaster communities around the world. The first objective of this project is to upgrade the West Greenhouse in UCSC’s arboretum to provide efficient and accessible solar power to its users. The goal is not only to develop a better system but for the EWB team to provide themselves with the necessary functional, hard skills of designing, planning, and building a stand-alone solar energy grid. In the second phase of this project, EWB-UCSC will apply their new knowledge to design and construct individualized solar home packages that can be purchased, installed, and maintained at the household level in developing communities, both within the US and abroad.



College 9/10 Garden

Allocated Funds: $800

The College 9/10 Garden strives to unite diverse students with the simple and universal beauty of plants. Passers-by will be able to use the garden at their leisure, be their intention to study, learn, or just enjoy the scenery. The garden will also encourage students to learn more about sustainable methods of providing foods for people within their community. The garden is not just open to College Nine and Ten student but all students across campus that want to be included within the project!

SVC Food Waste

Allocated Funds: $3,750

The SVC Food-Waste Diversion Program will purchase and deploy six indoor food-waste bins to establish a sustainable alternative to dumping food-waste in trash that leads to the landfill. This program will also measure the tonnage of waste diverted to evaluate how much demand exists at SVC, and determine if long-term funding is cost-effective at SVC's location.



Freezer Retrofit Project

Allocated Funds: $49,119

Labs account for about half the energy used on campus, with about 10% of that energy being consumed by cold storage operations. This year the Sustainability Office’s Green Labs Program, in collaboration with PG&E, UCSC Procurement Office, and the Energy Services Department have developed a freezer retrofit program whereby old inefficient freezers will be replaced with new ultra-efficient models. Ten labs including the Pogson Lab, Parker Lab, Sanford Lab, Sinervo Lab, Zavaleta Lab, Kellogg Lab, and many more are partnering with the team to save about 24,090 kWh.

Electric Vehicle for Student Transportation to Año Nuevo Reserve

Allocated Funds: $10,000

Undergraduate and graduate researchers make daily trips between UC Santa Cruz and Año Nuevo Reserve to conduct research on northern elephant seals.  This amazing experience has inspired countless students to pursue careers in science and we seek to make this more accessible to students while reducing our carbon footprint.  We will purchase an all-electric car for dedicated use by our next generation of conservation leaders working at Año Nuevo Reserve!



Quarry Plaza Resource Recovery Zero Waste:

Allocated Funds: $8,000

As a pedestrian of the Quarry Plaza you'll have access to zero waste stations consisting of the four streams, trash, recycling, compost and paper.  Users will have a clear choice of how to dispose of their material, which will help make support the campus reaching it's zero waste goals.



Green Office Certification

Allocated Funds: $6,227

This project will focus on reducing our energy consumption and waste production on campus by providing campus offices with the resources to be more sustainable. This project hopes to connect faculty and students on campus through working toward a common goals... sustainability! To achieve this goal, we will continue to outreach to offices across campus and give them the opportunity to participate in our program. This grant will allow us to purchase items such as compost bins, energy saving smart strips, reusable hand towels, and brita water filters that will better assist offices in reducing their carbon footprint. They also will incentive participating in our program. We will measure our success by monitoring the energy saved in kW hours per year from using smart strips as well as the waste in pounds saved from eliminating paper towel, plastic water bottle, and organic food waste.



Green Labs Equipment Retrofit

Allocated Funds: $15,000

The Green Labs Equipment Retrofit Fund provides certified labs with a funding source to cover the cost premium for energy-efficient lab equipment in replacement of old energy intensive pieces of equipment. The initiation of this fund was started by the Green Lab’s mission to improve energy efficiency, increase green purchasing, and reduce waste. The Green Labs Equipment Retrofit Fund has saved about 95,019 kWh/yr as well as helped reduce 410,000 gallons of water.

Reduce Paper Towel Waste at OPERS

Allocated Funds: 20,000

This project aims to reduce paper towels at OPERS, which is 90% of the facilities waste, by removing a majority of paper towels and installing hand air dryers instead.