Operations

In this section, you can learn about campus operations and the results of efforts to decrease the environmental impact, including UW–Madison’s energy footprint, how people get around campus, how much waste is diverted from landfills, and how much water the campus uses.

Highlighted Results

90 %of Students Commute to Campus by Any Means Other Than Driving Alone

Operations Data

What are the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with main campus operations? This section includes data on total GHG emissions by scope (presented in metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent, MTCO2e) and GHG emissions per campus user and per square foot of building space.

You can learn more about GHG emission scopes and the organizational boundary here; the weighted campus user calculation is documented here. Scope 3 emissions estimates are only available for 2007 and 2018 – 2021.

Explore these resources to learn more about our campus heating and cooling systems and district energy systems. Additional information on air pollutant management in and around the UW-Madison campus can be found through the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources Air Management Data Viewer.

Data last updated in July 2023. Data will be updated each spring. The full dataset, including emissions by source, is available for download here.

 

 

What renewable energy powers our campus? This section includes data on renewable energy sources for UW–Madison. Information on total energy use can be found in in the Energy Tab or Energy Use in State Facilities Report.

You can learn more renewable energy programs here and so we compare to other institutions through our participation in the EPA Green Power Partnership. Any renewable energy generated on campus is noted in the table.

Data last updated in June 2023. Data will be updated each summer.

 

What is the total energy use on campus? This section includes data on how much electrical and thermal energy is used on campus. Energy use is presented in Million British Thermal Units (MMBtu).

Explore these resources to learn more about our campus heating and cooling systems and district energy systems. The thermal energy load on campus is sourced from natural gas with occasional fuel oil in times of increased demand. For the main campus the majority of electricity is provided by MGE and more information on their sustainability efforts can be found here.

Energy Use Intensity was calculated by summing the total energy use on campus (both electrical and thermal) and dividing by total square feet of building space. The weighted campus user calculation is documented here.

Data last updated in June 2023. Data will be updated each summer.

How do people get to campus? This section includes data that reflects the commuting choices of students and employees. More information on commuting options offered by the Commuter Solutions team can be found here

Transportation data presented below are the result of a model developed by the Office of Sustainability and utilize the results of the biennial Transportation Services Survey Report. For more information on the Office of Sustainability model and its assumptions, please reach out to Alex Frank (alex.frank@wisc.edu).

Data last updated in May 2022. Data will be updated following the release of the biennial Transportation Services Survey Report.

 

 

How much campus waste is diverted from the landfill? This section includes data on the types of Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) that is generated on campus. MSW includes everyday items we use and then throw away, such as product packaging, grass clippings, furniture, clothing, bottles, food scraps, newspapers, appliances, paint, and batteries. This section also tracks how such waste is diverted from landfills through recycling, composting, and reuse.

The weighted campus user calculation is documented here.

Data last updated in October 2021. Data will be updated each Fall.

 

 

How is waste handled from construction and demolition processes? Waste generated during construction and demolition is more uniform and easily recycled. This section includes data on the construction and demolition waste diverted from landfills.

Data last updated in November 2023. Data will be updated each Fall.

 

How much water does campus use? This section includes data on how much water is used by buildings and people on campus.

Potable water (e.g., water that is fit for consumption) comes from the Madison Water Utility while Nonpotable water comes from lake water intakes used in campus heating and cooling plants.

The weighted campus user calculation is documented here.

Data last updated in November 2023. Data will be updated each Fall.