Initiatives

Sustainability Goals by 2020

Sustainability 2020 embraces the integration of sustainability into all facets of the university. This plan supports coordination and implementation through USC’s decentralized management model by focusing on policies that affect the university as a whole.

Goals at a glance: 

Sustainability in Education and Research

  • Encourage the development of environmentally literate students and faculty
  • Develop degree programs that train students to be practitioners of sustainability studies and science with a curriculum that embodies breadth and depth
  • Develop excellence in research that includes cross-disciplinary studies, promotes competitiveness in grant applications, and produces transformative findings

Engagement in Sustainability

  • Strengthen awareness of existing campus sustainability practices and set targets to increase activity
  • Establish the USC campuses as living laboratories for sustainability
  • Engage the community in the principles of sustainability

Energy Conservation & Greenhouse Gas Mitigation

  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions per square foot by 20% from 2014 levels by 2020
  • Capitalize on energy risks and opportunities

Sustainable Transportation

  • Reduce the number of single occupancy vehicles (SOVs) traveling to and from the USC campuses
  • Increase student, faculty, and staff participation in alternative transportation programs

Sustainable Procurement

  • Engage 75% of USC departments and offices in responsible purchasing practices by 2020
  • Purchase 10% of food from sustainable sources by 2017 and 20% by 2020

Waste Diversion

  • Achieve 75% waste diversion levels by 2020
  • Increase education on waste reduction and recycling and expand diversion and recycling programs

Waste Conservation

  • Decrease potable water use 10% by 2017 and 25% by 2020
  • Increase awareness of current water conservation practices
  • Implement audience-appropriate educational campaigns designed to modify behavior and increase conservation

Click here to learn more about the Sustainability 2020 Plan’s origins.
Click here to read the entire plan.