GHG Report for University of Colorado at Boulder
Submitted on September 15, 2010; last updated on October 18, 2010
Summary StatisticsMaking fair comparisons between higher education institutions is always challenging due to the rich diversity of higher education. The unverified nature of the information in this database and unavailability of unbiased normalization metrics means such comparisons are even more difficult. Users should therefore approach direct institution to institution comparisons with caution and recognize that all comparisons between institutions are inherently biased.
|Total||Per Full-Time Enrollment||Per 1000 Square Feet||% Offset|
|Gross emissions (Scopes 1 + 2)||142,111 metric tons of CO2e||4.7 metric tons of CO2e||14.0 metric tons of CO2e||3%|
|Gross emissions (Scopes 1 + 2 + 3)||182,885 metric tons of CO2e||6.1 metric tons of CO2e||18.0 metric tons of CO2e||2%|
|Net emissions||178,912 metric tons of CO2e||6.0 metric tons of CO2e||17.6 metric tons of CO2e||N/A|
Emissions Inventory Methodology and Boundaries
|Start date of the 12-month period covered in this report||January 1, 2009|
|Consolidation methodology used to determine organizational boundaries||Equity share approach|
If any institution-owned, leased, or operated buildings or other holdings that should fall within the organizational boundaries are omitted, briefly explain why.
|Emissions calculation tool used||Custom tool|
Please describe why this tool was selected.
To enable enhanced data consolidation, tracking and analysis, UCB chose to create its own basic emissions calculation spreadsheet tool. This custom tool does, however, adhere to the same basic GHG accounting principles, methodologies and emissions factors used in the CA-CP Calculator.
Please describe the source(s) of the emissions coefficients used.
Xcel Energy, Inc. Annual Reports, and regulatory filings made by Xcel to the Colorado Public Service Commission.
|Which version of IPCC's list of global warming potentials did you use?||Third Assessment Report|
|Who primarily conducted this emissions inventory?||Environmental Center Director and Interim Energy Program Manager in cooperation with the Campus Cons|
Please describe the process of conducting the inventory.
Data collection for emissions inventory was compiled from pre-existing campus data aggregation and tracking systems in various departments including Accounting, Facilities Management, Parking and Transportation Services, Purchasing, and Human Resources. These data were compared with UCB utility data and data from Xcel Energy.
Please describe any emissions sources that were classified as de minimis and explain how a determination of the significance of these emissions was made.
Identified de minimis sources are: CH4 and N2O from fossil fuel and electricity usage; HFCs from cooling equipment; CO2, CH4 and N2O from fleet transportations fuels; and waste landfilling.
Please describe any data limitations related to this submission and any major assumptions made in response to these limitations.
One limitation is the emissions factor used to estimate CO2, CH4 and N2O emissions from electricity purchased from our utility, Xcel Energy. As prescribed by the CA-CP tool we used the Department of Energy’s eGRID database of regional emissions factors from electricity generating plants. However, these factors are released with a lag time of several years. The current factors used in our GHG inventory are from 2005. This limitation is common as most entities reporting GHG inventories depend on these factors.
Emissions from the following sources (in metric tons of CO2e)
|Scope 1 Emissions|
|Stationary Combustion||48,765.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Mobile Combustion||1,518.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Process Emissions||0.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Fugitive Emissions||0.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Total Scope 1 emissions||50,283.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Scope 2 Emissions|
|Purchased Electricity||91,828.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Purchased Heating||0.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Purchased Cooling||0.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Purchased Steam||0.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Total Scope 2 emissions||91,828.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Scope 3 Emissions|
|Commuting||12,828.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Air Travel||27,033.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Solid Waste||913.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Total Scope 3 emissions||40,774.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Biogenic Emissions from Stationary Combustion||No information provided|
|Biogenic Emissions from Mobile Combustion||No information provided|
|Carbon offsets purchased||2,408.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|Offset verification program(s)||Other|
Description of offsets purchased (including vendor, project source, etc.)
The Larimer County offset project is designed and managed in accordance with the Climate Action Reserve’s Landfill Gas Protocol. The protocol provides independent and transparent procedures for calculating the emission reductions resulting from destroying methane to produce electricity and verifying the level of offsets by an accredited auditor. The offsets purchased from this project will be registered on the Reserve’s publicly accessible registry and retired on behalf of the donors to the Colorado Carbon Fund who made this transaction possible.
|Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs)|
|Total RECs purchased||2179000 kWh|
|Percent of total electricity consumption mitigated through the purchase of RECs||1.3 %|
|Emissions reductions due to the purchase of RECs||1,565.0 metric tons of CO2e|
|REC verification program(s)||Green-e|
Description of RECs purchased (including vendor, project source, etc.)
Wind energy RECs from Colorado and Minnesota projects.
|Sequestration and Carbon Storage|
|Sequestration due to land owned by the institution||No information provided|
Description of how sequestration was calculated
No information provided
|Carbon storage due to composting||No information provided|
Normalization and Contextual Data
|Gross square feet of building space||10,141,285.0 sq ft|
|Net assignable square feet of laboratory space||No information provided|
|Net assignable square feet of health care space||No information provided|
|Net assignable square feet of residential space||No information provided|
|Total Student Enrollment (FTE)||29988.0|
|Residential Students||No information provided|
|Full-time Commuter Students||No information provided|
|Part-time Commuter Students||No information provided|
|Non-Credit Students||No information provided|
|Full-time Faculty||No information provided|
|Part-time Faculty||No information provided|
|Full-time Staff||No information provided|
|Part-time Staff||No information provided|
|Other Contextual Data|
|Endowment Size||No information provided|
|Heating Degree Days||No information provided|
|Cooling Degree Days||No information provided|
Please describe any circumstances specific to your institution that provide context for understanding your greenhouse gas emissions this year.
Overall, the trend of UCB green house gas (GHG) emissions from major sources is essentially flat in absolute terms and declining in relative terms despite a 14 percent growth in facilities footprint since 2005. This is due to extensive energy efficiency/conservation efforts, the LEED Gold building standard applied to all construction projects, and increasingly “green” electricity being supplied by Xcel Energy. The data indicate:
|Completed inventory narrative||
University of Colorado at Boulder Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Calendar Year 2009 All Scopes & Calendar Years 2005–09 Major Sources Trend
|Completed inventory calculator||No information provided|