Projects Funded in 2018-2019


Allocated Funds: $1,169.46

Water scarcity and contamination are key problems environmentally and economically. This project aims to develop a deployable system for water treatment in off-grid applications to turn wastewater into potable water for combatting both of these issues.


Central Coast Farmers Sequester Carbon

Allocated Funds: $4,500

In agricultural settings, soil carbon sequestration is not only a method of reducing levels of atmospheric greenhouse gases – it is also a critical opportunity to enhance soil fertility. Despite widespread interest in sustainable soil management practices, many low-income farmers of color throughout California’s Central Coast lack the resources required for implementation of these practices. This project utilizes social science research methods to examine barriers in the implementation of best management practices and, through collaboration with regional farmer assistance providers, addresses these barriers through educational programming.


Toadstool Composting

Allocated Funds: $2,500

Soiled cardboard pizza boxes are compostable and can be sequestered into Earth as soil carbon but are instead taking up limited landfill space that should be saved for items that cannot be repurposed. Our project seeks to align itself with Goal 2 of the Materials Management and Food systems section of the Sustainability plan by redirecting this waste and use it as a medium to create compost.


Sustainable Video Pilot Project

Allocated Funds: $2,182.50

Students often think they need to drive alone to get home for the holidays to LA. Students don't know the various options available to use sustainable transportation. By becoming informed about the options, hopefully, more students will chose an alternative to driving alone and save greenhouse gas emissions. By using a video format, we hope to have a more accessible fun way to reach students and inspire them to make a change.


College 9 and 10 Garden Project

Allocated Funds: $800

The purpose of the Garden Project is to create a similar awareness of land use as well as food systems awareness for the community of students at Colleges Nine and Ten; similar to the awareness that was created by gardens at other Colleges such as Kresge, Stevenson, and College 8. The spread of awareness throughout the community will encourage students to learn more about sustainable methods of providing food for themselves.


Energy Conservation in Residence Halls and Apartments

Allocated Funds: $2,270

We are providing products (smart strips) and educating students to reduce their energy usage to lower carbon dioxide emissions. This helps to achieve the UC Carbon Neutrality by 2025 goal and helps lessen the university's contribution to climate change.


Energy Efficiency and Conservation in the Biology Teaching Laboratories 

Allocated Funds: $4,000

This project has been awarded a Carbon Fund grant in order to replace aging, energy inefficient freezer and refrigeration units with modern equivalents to achieve significant reductions in electricity use associate with lab classes, thus reducing the carbon footprint of teaching operations in Thimann Laboratories. The old refrigerators will be replaced with new, energy efficient ones at the end of the 2019 Spring quarter.


Bhalla Lab ULT Freezer Replacement

Allocated Funds: $14,569

This project proposes to purchase one minus 80 large freezer in the Bhalla Lab with a much more energy efficient unit. The current freezer unit in the Bhalla lab is a Thermo Fisher Scientific ULT chest freezer model ULT2090-5A. Labs account for about half of all energy used on campus, with about 10% of that energy being consumed by cold storage operations. By targeting energy efficiency improvements in labs, UCSC will make major strides toward reaching the systemwide goal of Carbon Neutrality by 2025.


TAPS Bike Library Expansion

Allocated Funds: $7,182

The funds used to purchase additional bikes, sets of rechargeable front and rear lights, u-locks and cables, and replacement/spare parts for upkeep, will increase the UCSC community’s accessibility to an alternative, low-carbon form of transportation. By giving more individuals an opportunity to use a bicycle, we are encouraging another means to reduce carbon footprints and hopefully shape their future transportation habits in a direction away from individualized auto-mobility.


Supporting Year Long Food Justice and Science Education Development In Calabasas Elementary Community Garden

Allocated Funds: $15,000

This project applied for funds in order to provide families in the Community Garden with access to fresh organic food year-round. The funds will go towards a hoop house and greenhouse that can also serve as teaching spaces for agro-technology to be implemented in the CES science curricula and for community-based workshops and events. Building a solar powered greenhouse means that UCSC students going to CES for the garden class internship can enrich their lesson plans to include conversations about solar energy, greenhouse cultivation, irrigation into their garden-based science curriculum.


Bicycle Planning

Allocated Funds: $14,214

This project received a Carbon Fund grant in order to supply the necessary wages to a professor who will help teach a class on bicycle planning. The class will promote greater bicycle use and safer streets in Santa Cruz by developing plans for protected bicycle lanes on key corridors in order to make Santa Cruz a more bike friendly city.


Stevenson Community Garden

Allocated Funds: $5,500

This project was granted a Carbon Fund grant in order to create a demonstration garden that serves to educate the community on sustainable gardening techniques. The goal is to enlighten the entire community on how to make better use of available resources by performing the various techniques. Some of these techniques will be demonstrated on weekly garden workdays (Friday) in order to allow for hands on community engagement. In order to turn this into a demonstration garden, the focus will be on educating people about compost, water waste, and the process of gardening.


TAPS Vanpool

Allocated Funds: $25,000

The primary purpose of this project is to provide the UCSC TAPS Vanpool Program with a new SUV Hybrid “Starter” Vanpool vehicle to be able to initiate and grow vanpools to new routes at a faster rate. The vanpool program allows UCSC affiliates to commute affordably to work or school with a subsidized transportation mode. This promotes equitable transport for all riders, no matter their cultural, gender, or socioeconomic backgrounds. This service provides a sustainable and equitable mode to access jobs and/or education.