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About Our Mission

Campus Sustainability Office


On October 3, 2006, The University of Winnipeg Board of Regents formally adopted a Campus Sustainability Policy which broadly commits the University to working toward the overall environmental, social and economic sustainability of all University programs, activities, and operations. In November of 2006, the University’s Senior Management Council adopted an ambitious package of policies and initiatives designed to implement the environmental dimension of the University’s overall sustainability policy.

Central to this goal is the creation of a comprehensive Sustainability Management System. This system is coordinated through the Campus Sustainability Office and supported by the Campus Sustainability Council. The system is being developed using the ISO 14001-2004e standard for Environmental Management Systems, but augmented with additional features to include social sustainability goals as well as environmental performance objectives. A paraphrase of the ISO standard defines a Sustainability Management System as:

“…that part of the overall management system which includes organizational structure, planning, activities, responsibilities, procedures, processes, and resources for developing, implementing, achieving, reviewing, and maintaining the [sustainability] policy.”  -- ISO 14001-2004E

The University’s system includes a Scope which defines the limits within which the system operates; the Aspects or environmental and social impacts it is intended to manage; Policies which outline broad goals, responsibility and accountability frameworks and reporting commitments; Goals which define what the management system aims to achieve; Indicators which are the measures being used to track progress; Action Plans or Initiatives that describe how the university will move indicators in the direction of its goals; and Performance Reporting procedures for monitoring progress toward goals and reporting results to decision-makers and stakeholders. In addition, all ISO-qualified management systems include commitments to continuous improvement over time, due diligence in implementing action plans, regulatory compliance in all operations of the university, staff training and development to build organizational capacity for sustainability, a communication program to communicate both commitments and achievements to stakeholders and employees, and full documentation of all policies, procedures, processes, and reports.

Scope

The scope of the University of Winnipeg Sustainability Management System includes:

  1. All physical facilities and buildings owned and managed by The University of Winnipeg including all future acquisitions of real properties which come to be owned and managed by The University.
  2. All physical facilities and buildings, or spaces within facilities or buildings, leased or rented by The University of Winnipeg, and over which The University can reasonably influence the sustainability performance of the facility.
  3. All routine activities, programs and operations of The University of Winnipeg,  whether on or off campus, and including staff, faculty and student travel, both directly on behalf of the University in conducting its operations and programs, or commuting of staff, faculty and students to and from their places of residence for purposes of work, teaching, research, study, recreation or any other University activity.
  4. All activities, programs or special events which may from time to time be hosted by The University of Winnipeg, or for which the University may provide physical facilities, active partnerships, or other support when such programs or events are offered by institutions, groups, corporations or organizations that are not formally recognized as part of the University community.
  5. All “arms length” agencies, corporations, institutes, research centers or other entities, to which University policies may generally apply.

Aspects

According to ISO 14001-2004e, “aspects” are those dimensions along which the operation of The University of Winnipeg can be observed to generate either positive or negative environmental and social consequences or impacts. The aspects addressed by the university’s Sustainability Management System include the following:

Environmental Aspects

Air Quality
Energy Use
Land Use and Property Management
Materials Use (Solid and Liquid Waste Generation, Recycling)
Procurement
Risk Management and Emergency Response
Transportation
Water Use

Social Aspects

While ISO 14001 does not address social sustainability concerns, The University of Winnipeg has elected to include a social sustainability dimension in its overall Sustainability Management System. As of September 2008, social sustainability “aspects” are under discussion and awaiting final definition.

Policies

The following policies have been enacted by The University of Winnipeg Board of Regents (Campus Sustainability Policy) and the Senior Management Council (Administrative policies relating to environmental sustainability). Additional policies are currently under development that address social sustainability goals.

Read our policies here.

Sustainability Management System Goals & Indicators

Within the Scope of its Sustainability Management System, The University of Winnipeg has enacted a Policy to address each Aspect of its environmental or social performance. In turn, every policy includes broad performance goals which are measured annually using a variety of indicators and metrics. The following goals and indicators are used to measure sustainability performance by The University of Winnipeg. For some indicators, data collection and reporting mechanisms are still under development.

Find goals and indicators here [PDF].

Performance Reporting

The University reports on its sustainability performance annually.  Copies of our annual reports can be found here.