The 2020 Environment, Sustainability and Resilience Master Plan


The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, and Rating System (STARS) is the national standard for sustainability reporting in higher education developed by the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. UNL completed its first STARS report in January 2014 and earned a Bronze rating. Since then, out team has been working diligently to improve our rating and update our STARS report every two years.

AASHE silver rating for sustainability, awarded to UNL

Summary of UNL's 2020 submission of STARS

Provisional Score: 62.46

Provisional Rating: Silver

Read more about STARS and UNL's rating on the AASHE website

Breakdown of Scoring

Academics: 65.9%

  • Curriculum: 24.19/40 points
  • Research: 14.05/18 points
  • Total: 38.24/58 points

Engagement: 93.2%

  • Campus engagement: 24.19/21 points
  • Public Engagement: 14.05/20 points
  • Total: 38.24/41 points

Planning and Administration: 47.3%

  • Coordination, Planning & Governance: 5.75/8 points
  • Diversity & Affordability: 7.7/10 points
  • Health, Well-being, & Work: 1.69/7 points
  • Investment: 0/7 points
  • Total: 12.8/32 points

Operations: 42.4%

  • Air & Climate: 5.59/11 points
  • Buildings: 1.58/8 points
  • Energy: 3.25/10 points
  • Food and Drinking: 1.60/8 points
  • Grounds: 3/4 points
  • Purchasing: 2.92/6 points
  • Transportation: 2.73/7 points
  • Waste: 5.62/10 points
  • Water: 3.43/6 points
  • Total: 29.72/70 points

UNL STARS 2018 Report

Breakdown by Category

UNL STARS 2016 Report

Breakdown by Category

We provide support for initiatives at the University to create a campus culture of social, economic, and environmental responsibility.

Stay Up to Date


Where do Graphics Come From?

Thursday, February 18, 2021

Hi, my name's Breanna Epp, I started as the graphic designer for the Office of Sustainability back at the beginning of August 2020. I jumped right in with my first major project to create signage for the OS's biggest event of the year, the Sustainability Summit. While this was kind of daunting at first, I was supported by my team, and it helped me gain confidence with the office. Since that giant task, I have taken on a variety of projects from creating signs and handouts for the new Recycling Pilot Program to creating templates for social media posts.

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Have you heard about UNL’s recycling pilot project?

Thursday, February 11, 2021
Photo Credit to Craig Chandler

Welcome to a new semester, Huskers! If you’ve been on campus over the past few weeks, you may have noticed a change in recycling and waste management in select buildings. In December, nearly 80 new grant-funded waste and recycling stations were installed in eight buildings as part of UNL’s recycling pilot project. These stations contain receptacles for paper, plastic and aluminum, and landfill materials and are located in centralized, high-traffic locations near restrooms, stairs and elevators, and building entrances.

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Sustainability Achievements

The University has earned recognition for its comprehensive sustainability efforts, its commitment to constructing and renovating existing buildings sustainably and its efforts to establish and sustain healthy community forests.