Principles

In pursuing its academic mission, Stanford University is committed to being a leader in the research, teaching and institutional practice of environmental sustainability. The university is therefore committed to following core sustainability principles in all facets of planning and operations so that Stanford can lessen its environmental impact, ensure a healthy community and contribute to global solutions. Targeted policies and practices – as well as individual, everyday actions – are essential to realizing our vision of incorporating sustainability into every aspect of campus life.

Advance sustainability knowledge

  • Ensure that all Stanford graduates, regardless of degree received, understand how the work they do can contribute to creating a sustainable world.
  • Achieve excellence in research that can help solve the complex problems involved in creating a sustainable world.

Establish sustainability as a core value

  • Lead sustainability by example.
  • Integrate environmental awareness into campus culture, and make sustainable practices a part of everyday life.
  • Incorporate considerations of sustainability into all aspects of campus purchases of products, services and food.

Minimize environmental footprint and preserve the ecosystem

  • Dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions from campus operations by reducing energy use in existing buildings, minimize energy use in new buildings, and greening our energy supply process and procurement.
  • Use water resources efficiently, minimizing total water demand by continuing to implement water conservation measures and incorporating infrastructure for future water-saving measures into new facilities.
  • Construct and renovate buildings to provide safe, productive indoor environments that use energy, water and other natural resources efficiently.
  • Reduce the number of drive-alone commuters, and avoid increasing the total number of trips taken during peak commuting hours.
  • Conserve resources through reuse, recycling, source reduction and composting – moving towards a zero waste campus.
  • Preserve and manage environmental resources to allow the functioning of natural ecosystems and the long-term persistence of native species.
  • Preserve and manage heritage resources to retain their historical and archaeological value and maximize their usefulness for producing knowledge.
“Sustainability must become a core value in everything we do. As a community we are committed to developing our core campus in a sustainable fashion that preserves what we cherish, that demonstrates leadership in the university’s commitment to be a good environmental steward and that safeguards the ability for future generations to thrive at Stanford.”
— John L. Hennessy
President, Stanford University
Targeted policies and practices—as well as individual, everyday actions—are essential to realizing our vision of a sustainable Stanford.