University of Utah Sustainability

Created in 2007, the University of Utah Sustainability Office develops initiatives and policies that advance sustainable solutions across campus based on the integration of social equity, ecological integrity, and economic security. Focus areas include: air quality, climate, energy and buildings, food, grounds, justice and equity, purchasing, transportation, waste and recycling, water, and wellness.

In 2018, the institution received a STARS silver rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education. The U is also a member of the University Climate Change Coalition.

Athletics Sustainability



Energy Reduction

University of Utah Athletics has made serious commitments to reducing its energy use over the past decade. Lighting upgrades at the Jon M. Huntsman Center are estimated to save nearly 150,000 kWh annually. U Athletics has also invested in LED lighting in other facilities, including the George S. Eccles Tennis Center, the Spence Eccles Field House, the Dumke Gymnastics Center, and the Ute Soccer Field.

Building Better

While plans for the renovation of Rice-Eccles Stadium are just beginning, cutting-edge updates are already part of the conversation.

The LEED-Gold Huntsman Basketball Facility exceeds the LEED baseline energy performance rating by 38 percent thanks to numerous strategies, including LED interior and exterior fixtures, efficient HVAC systems, and high-quality building insulation and windows. Exterior fixtures minimize light pollution and improve nighttime visibility. The facility is also manufactured using recycled materials and local resources, and nearly 85 percent of on-site construction waste was diverted from landfills.

The Football Center is a state-of-the-art facility that houses a sports medicine complex, condition center, practice fields, and more. High-efficiency windows and insulation, as well as significant commitments to indoor air quality in building materials, helped the building achieve LEED-silver.

Community Engagement

U Athletics values building relationships beyond the boundaries of campus. The department regularly hosts underprivileged students at women's basketball games, creating a space for these students to foster a sense of belonging in higher education and experience a college campus. Student athletes complete community service projects throughout the year.

Transportation

All U Athletics facilities are easily accessible from local light rail and buses. Since 2014, every ticket to a Utah Athletics event has included public transportation fares free of charge, helping an estimated 140,000 fans leave their cars at home while attending football, basketball and gymnastics events each year.

Food & Beverage

  • Preference is given to local and sustainable products
  • Condiments are served in bulk containers and minimal food packaging is used

Printing

  • Official conference materials are printed using vegetable based inks on recycled materials
  • Printing is limited and preference is given to digital resources

Registration

  • Event promotion is pursued primarily via online methods
  • Registration process utilizes a 100 percent paperless ticket system
  • Badge holders are compostable, made from corn-starch and reused when possible