Notre Dame tracks a number of metrics related to sustainability. These graphs represent the most prominent of those metrics: carbon emissions per gross square foot of building space, recycling rate, and water use per capita.




Units Glossary

GSF (Gross Square Foot): Measurement of indoor building space from outside wall to outside wall.

MMbtu (Millions of British Thermal Units): Standard measure of energy output. One BTU is approximately 1,055 Joules. One standard cubic foot of natural gas yields ≈ 1030 BTU.

MTCO2e (Metric Tons of Carbon Dioxide Equivalent): Some greenhouse gases are more potent than others; emissions of gases other than CO2 are translated into CO2 equivalents so that their impacts can be directly compared. One metric ton is equal to 2,205 lbs.

Carbon Emissions

Carbon emissions per gross square foot of building space on campus have declined 23% since 2007-08. These reductions have resulted from a combination of efficiency renovations, fuel switching, and behavior change.

Recycling Rate

The campus recycling rate has increased 19% since 2007-08. This improvement has resulted from a combination of wider availability of single stream recycling and better education of the campus community regarding what can and cannot be recycled.

Water Use

Campus water use has declined 21% since 2007-2008. This is due primarily to the installation of a more efficient irrigation system and greater use of native landscaping.