Planting Sustainable Practices at University Centers
  • Price Center East expansion received a LEED silver equivalent rating for sustainable elements and construction practices.
  • The new Sustainability Resource Center is housed in Price Center West, creating visibility for sustainable efforts and enhancing collaboration among students, staff and faculty.
  • Price Center East HVAC system is more energy-efficient, using half the energy of the larger Price Center West.
  • Price Center East offices, meeting rooms, and restrooms have motion sensor light switches.
  • Price Center West Ballroom lighting system has been replaced with an energy-efficient system.
  • Upgrade LED lighting to select areas of Price Center West to reduce electricity usage
  • SDG&E Energy Audit of all food vendor locations
  • Price Center is part of a University-wide solar energy program which generates 1 megawatt of clean electricity. The Price Center’s PV clusters produce 225 kW of power at peak production. Here is a snapshot of the impact:
    All of Price Center:
    • Total power = 207 kilowatts
    • Annual energy production = 367 Megawatt-hours/yr (MWh/yr) (approx.)
    • Value of energy produced = $30,000/yr (approx.)
    • Number of panels = 1,008
    • System area = 14,200 sq. ft.
    • Annual CO2 reduced = 185 tons
    • Average US homes powered = 34.4
    • Cars off the road = 27.3 (CO2 equivalent)
  • The Sustainability Resource Center houses an award winning DC to DC lighting system which runs on batteries fueled by solar panels. The SRC system uses four photovoltaic solar panels that convert sunlight into clean, renewable direct current. To learn more, visit
Office Practices
  • Administrative computers are backed-up daily so users may shut down their computers at the end of the day.
  • Computer life is maximized by cycling older computers from staff down to student workers.
  • Once electronics such as computers, monitors and printers have reached the end of their lifecycle they are properly submitted to recycled electronic waste outlets.
  • Over 90% of custodial cleaning products are certified “green”, and new sustainable cleaning practices continue to be researched.
  • The marketing department produces eco-friendly products and uses vendors that are committed to sourcing papers from well-managed forests.
  • The quarterly Pocket Events Guide (PEG) was reduced from an 80 page booklet to an 11”x17” sheet printed twice a quarter on paper from a well-managed forest.
  • Eco-Friendly options such as refurbishing or purchasing recycled content furniture are prioritized over replacing furniture. As an example, eco-friendly chairs have been placed in the Revelle College Room and the furniture in the Theater Lobby was re-upholstered, rather than being replaced, using recycled fabrics.
  • Building materials that are sustainable are given higher consideration for use in building projects.
  • As of February 2017, 6172lbs of food waste has been composted by Resource Management Group
  • Price Center uses the single stream recycling program, where all recyclables can be placed into one bin with recycling bins on all levels and in all offices. Thus, all recycling can be co-mingled making it easier to recycle.
  • Increased number or recycle receptacles in Price Center and Student Center
  • Partner with Surplus Sales for furniture reuse
  • University Centers uses a minimum of 50% recycled paper for copiers and printers.
  • University Centers collects recyclable materials from site construction waste and sends it to appropriate processing facilities.
  • University Centers participates in a campus battery-recycling program.
  • University Centers co-sponsors “Thrift Trunk Show” to promote recycled clothing
  • Water-filling stations are available in the Price Center West Theater Lobby, West Ballroom Foyer, Price Center East Atrium, 3rd level, 4th level, and Porter’s Pub.
  • Synthetic turf made from recycled materials covers the grass inlays on the Triton Steps to eliminate water use and gas mowing.
  • Price Center East restrooms are outfitted with flow sensor faucets to reduce extensive water use.
  • Price Center West faucets outfitted with low flow, solar powered sensor faucets.
  • Vendors are in the process of transitioning to eco-friendly product packaging and have been encouraged to use and sell Fair Trade products
  • Cooking grease from restaurant vendors is collected, recycled, and re-used in other products.
Sustainable Efforts by University Food Vendors
  • University Centers hosted a Fair Trade and Sustainability Exposition from 2010-2016. The purpose is to educate the campus community about sustainable food practices as well as encourage vendors to incorporate sustainable practices into their business.
  • Lease agreements now incorporate language to require vendors to use biodegradable packaging and adhere to the Fair Trade Policy and Sustainable Food Policy. They are also committed to the UC San Diego goal of purchasing at least 25% of their food from specific sustainable food categories.
  • UCSD has been recognized as a Fair Trade University.
Bombay Coast
  • Compostable take-out containers
  • Committed to providing Halal meats on a daily basis.
Burger King
  • Features the revolutionary Duke Flexible Batch Broiler, which maximizes cooking flexibility while reducing gas consumption by 52 percent, and electricity consumption by 90 percent.
  • Fair Trade sugar
Jamba Juice
  • Fair Trade tea and other beverages
  • Organic granola
  • Paper and compostable cups only- Styrofoam-free
Rubio's Fresh Mexican Grill
  • No lard or MSG in recipes
  • rBST free milk
  • rBST free sour cream
  • Rubio's Bottle Box salad bowl, a special salad bowl made from recycled plastic bottles to be used with all Rubio's salads is a 100% recycled and 100% recyclable. Bottle Box helps keep used bottles out of the oceans and landfills
  • Reusable Rubio's a-Go-Go® Catering bags
  • Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI)-certified paper cups
  • Compostable bleach-free napkins
  • Paper menus made from Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified paper and 10% recycled materials
  • View Rubio's philosophy on social responsibility.
Round Table Pizza
  • Fair Trade beverages
The Food Co-op at UCSD
  • Winner of UCSD’s 2014 “Most Sustainable Food Vendor”
  • Fair Trade coffee, tea, and sugar
  • Locally grown and produced goods
  • Mostly Organic
Santorini logo
  • Stopped selling plastic water bottles as part of their combo meals
Starbucks logo
  • Donates all coffee grounds to our campus for its gardening and landscaping programs, and to individuals through our "Grounds for Your Garden program".
  • Does not carry plastic water bottles in support of the UC San Diego campus zero waste initiative.
  • Starbucks at UC San Diego offers a .10 discount for the reuse of personal tumblers.
  • Starbucks recycles all waste from in store use.
  • Starbucks serve 100% Fair Trade Certified or Starbucks C.A.F.E. certified Coffees (C.A.F.E. is Starbucks internal verification process that equals the same as 3rd party Fair Trade Certification standards)
  • Starbucks practices Ethical Sourcing and buying called "Starbucks Shared Planet" commitment requiring transparency, ethical labor standards, and a Low-Environmental impact for its growers.
  • Starbucks is partnered with Conservation International to develop all standard of C.A.F.E.
  • Starbucks creates Education initiatives in the communities where we farm around the world.
  • Starbucks created the RED program with Global Fund to reach out to African communities devastated by AIDS.
  • Starbucks created "One Tree for every Bag" program which plants one coffee tree for every pound of coffee sold.

  • For more details go to for more info and for the Starbucks Annual Reports.
  • In 2014 Subway phased out plastic film packaging in favor of compostable packaging
Yogurt World
  • Winner of UCSD’s 2013 “Most Sustainable Food Vendor”
  • Continues to voluntarily provide compostable food scraps to Roger’s Garden.
  • California-made beers and wine (regionally-produced)
  • Fair Trade, organic, and locally roasted coffee (Cafe Moto)
  • Fair Trade tea
In progress
  • All incoming food vendors are required to avoid Styrofoam and incorporate the UC Sustainable Food Policy into their practice; current food vendors will be required to do the same at time of contract renewal.
Future Goals
  • Change all manual light switches to motion sensor lighting
  • Install more water-efficient pre-rinse spray nozzles in food vendor kitchens
  • Hold regular food vendor meetings to discuss implementing more sustainable practices
  • Developing plans to initiate a compost program
  • Research virtualization to reduce number of servers required to service students and staff
University Centers participates in the UCSD Sustainable Food Services Working Group
Here are a few examples on what we are going to do:
  • Perform study of contract renewals and appropriateness of requiring deadlines or specific actions by vendors
  • Develop data tracking tool; track and annually report the percentage of total food budget spent on sustainable food
  • Community education such as labeling local community products, etc
  • Perform feasibility studies as needed to fulfill UCOP Policy on Sustainable Practices requirements
  • Post information about current sustainable food purchasing practices from campus foodservice operations
  • Develop standard language for foodservice operator contracts to codify policy and expand implementation
  • Increase participation by all foodservice operators in recycling and composting programs and other initiatives
  • Increase campus community awareness of sustainable foodservice opportunities, practices and offerings including signage
UCSD Sustainability 2.0
  • Zero Waste by 2020
  • UCSD Sustainability Resource Center
  • UCSD Sustainable Food Policy (Download PDF)
    The purpose of the Plan is to ensure achievement of the University of California, Office of the President’s Policy on Sustainable Practices (UCOP Policy) as it pertains to food services and to enable achievement of UC San Diego and UC San Diego Medical Centers sustainable food service operations goals.
    UC San Diego and UC San Diego Medical Centers Sustainable Food Services Goals include:
    • Increase sustainable, local, fair trade, and organic food purchased and served by campus foodservices providers as follows:
      • 25% by 2016
      • 30% by 2021
  • UCSD Fair Trade Policy (Download PDF)