Penn Sustainability FY23 Annual Report Released

green cover with text and image for annual report

The creation of 12 individual School Academic Climate Commitments, completion of the first carbon footprint for the University’s real estate portfolio, growth of funds collected through a Climate Impact Offset charge for air travel, and the addition of full-size electric vans to Penn’s transportation fleet are significant achievements of progress completed in FY23 against the goals of the University of Pennsylvania’s Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0, says the Penn Sustainability Office.

The Penn Sustainability Office has just released the Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0 FY23 Annual Report, based on data and metrics for fiscal year 2023 gathered from across many academic and administrative units at the University. The Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0 FY23 Annual Report documents Penn’s progress towards the goals of the 2019 Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0 (CSAP 3.0), tracking metrics in Academics, Utilities & Operations, Physical Environment, Strategic Waste, Procurement, Transportation, and Outreach & Engagement.

“There are many people across Penn working on sustainability, applying knowledge and bringing together solutions for the community,” said Anne Papageorge, Senior Vice President of Penn’s Facilities & Real Estate Services Division, recognizing the Environmental Sustainability Advisory Committee, schools and centers, the Environmental Innovations Initiative, Business Services, Penn Transportation & Parking, Penn Dining, Procurement Services, the Office of the Vice Provost for Research, PennPraxis, the Center for Environmental Building + Design, and student and staff Eco Reps.

This report offers an annual, comprehensive, graphic, and concise presentation of progress in key performance areas during the previous fiscal year. Some FY23 highlights include:

Academics

CSAP 3.0 Goal: Improve the Climate Literacy of Penn Students

FY23 Progress: The Environmental Innovations Initiative facilitated the publishing of an Academic Climate Commitment for each of Penn’s 12 Schools, articulating their dedication to an operational and scholarly focus on climate and sustainability.

Utilities & Operations

CSAP 3.0 Goal: Reduce Penn’s overall carbon footprint towards 2042 carbon neutrality goal

FY23 Progress: Construction progressed on both renewable energy projects that are part of Penn’s solar Power Purchase Agreement (PPA). The installations came online at the end of 2023 and have  begun supplying the campus with renewable electricity. The PPA is expected to supply 70% of the electricity used annually by Penn’s main campus and the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania in the Greater Philadelphia area.

Physical Environment

CSAP 3.0 Goal:  Continue to Improve the Sustainability of Penn's Real Estate Holdings

FY23 Progress: Penn Sustainability worked with the Center for Environmental Building + Design (CEBD) and Real Estate to complete the first Real Estate carbon footprint.

Strategic Waste

CSAP 3.0 Goal: Increase Penn's Overall Waste Diversion and Minimize Waste Sent to Landfill

FY23 Progress: Penn Sustainability published an updated map of water bottle refill stations, illustrating the 324 campus locations where water bottles can be filled for free.

Procurement

CSAP 3.0 Goal: Establish a plan to reduce Penn’s carbon emissions from air travel.

FY23 Progress: In its second year of operation, Penn collected $191,454 through its Climate Impact Offset charge and offset the 53,732,321 domestic and international miles flown in FY23.

Transportation

CSAP 3.0 Goal: Improved energy efficiency of parking and transportation facilities and fleet composition.

FY23 Progress: Penn Transit purchased four electric passenger vans, which are now operational on several campus routes.

Outreach & Engagement

CSAP 3.0 Goal: Expand and Strengthen Existing Outreach Programs

FY23 Progress: Climate Week and Earth Week featured more than 80 programs and events centered on environmental justice and demonstrated the University’s commitment to an equitable transition to a carbon-neutral Penn.

A PDF of the Climate and Sustainability Action Plan 3.0 FY23 Annual Report is available on the Penn Sustainability website, https://www.sustainability.upenn.edu/resources/2023fy-climate-and-sustainability-action-plan-csap30-annual-report.

Penn Sustainability is a University-wide initiative to advance sustainability at the University of Pennsylvania and coordinate programs to develop a more sustainable campus. View a video introduction to Penn Sustainability on YouTube. Visit sustainability.upenn.edu.

Last Updated: January 25, 2024