2016 Survey

Thank you for completing the annual Sustainability Survey.

Congratulations to Sheila Orechia, an undergraduate student in CAS, who was randomly selected as the prize winner.

Conducting an annual survey truly helps us better understand our community and informs the direction of our future communications and programming. We were thrilled to have received more than 1,700 completed responses!

The survey was designed to gauge progress on sustainability awareness at Boston University. Having information about your understanding and activities regarding sustainability will better help us plan future efforts, programs and communications with the BU community. Consistent with the guidelines of STARS, included are questions on general sustainability literacy, as well as BU-specific and behavioral questions.

Answers to the 2016 Sustainability Survey

Energy Use Intensity (EUI) is like Miles per Gallon for buildings. EUI measures a building’s total energy use per square foot. Generally, a low EUI indicates energy-efficient performance. Please indicate if you think that the following actions can help lower BU’s energy use intensity.

  • Turning off lights
  • Washing clothes in cold water
  • Taking shorter showers
  • Eating beef
  • Eating local or organic produce
  • Using shared printing resources
  • Replacing light bulbs with CFLs or LEDs
  • Using a smart power strip
  • Unplugging devices when not in use
  • Recycling paper/plastic/metal

Please indicate if you think the following items can be recycled or donated at BU.

  • White Paper – yes
  • Newspaper and Magazines – yes
  • Corrugated Cardboard – yes
  • Tissues and Paper Towels – no
  • Plastic Bottles – yes
  • Glass Bottles – yes
  • Soda Cans – yes
  • Paper Coffee Cups – yes
  • Styrofoam Cups – no
  • Batteries – yes
  • Cell Phones – yes
  • Computers – yes
  • Toner/Ink Cartridges – yes
  • Small Appliances – yes
  • Clothes – yes
  • Light Bulbs – yes
  • Linens – yes

Which of the following is the most commonly used definition of sustainable development?

  • Building a neighborhood that is both socio-demographically and economically diverse
  • Giving universal access to education, health care and social services
  • Setting aside resources for preservation never to be used
  • Meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs

Which of the following activities contribute to an individual’s carbon footprint? (Choose all that apply.)

  • Purchasing/using electricity generated from fossil fuels
  • Driving a traditional gas vehicle to work/school   
  • Driving an electric car to work/school
  • Eating a meat-based diet

In November 2015, BU joined over 300 colleges & universities across the country participating in the American Campuses Act on Climate Pledge to demonstrate their support for strong climate action by world leaders in Paris and increase campus sustainability. Which of the following pledges did BU make?

  • Reduce carbon emissions by 35% for 5 million square feet by 2020
  • Prepare the University for a changing climate through climate resilient building standards
  • Support academic research on climate change
  • Join other colleges in a collective goal of producing 1 gigawatt of green power by 2020
  • All of the above
  • None of the above

The 2015 UN Paris Climate Talks (COP21) agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by the mid 21st century to hold global warming below:

  • 4°C (7.2°F)
  • 1.5°C (2.7°F)
  • 2°C (3.6°F)
  • There was no agreement

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