The ASUCD Sustainability Audit is an annual survey that EPPC gives to ASUCD units, commissions, and committees with budgets of over $1,000 in order to gauge their sustainability practices and encourage them to set goals to improve their overall sustainability. The Audit measures sustainability in the areas covered in the Guidelines for Environmental Sustainability in the ASUCD Bylaws. EPPC has continued to refine both the ASUCD Sustainability Audit and the ASUCD Guidelines for Environmental Sustainability over the 2021-2022 academic year
2020 Audit Updates
In Spring 2020, EPPC commissioners revitalized the ASUCD Sustainability Audit that EPPC is mandated to conduct yearly. The project quickly grew to include a rewrite of ASUCD's environmental bylaws, which were found to be insufficient and out-of-date. Over several months, this team combed through UCOP and UC Davis sustainability and environmental policy, extracting the most relevant portions for use in the updated bylaws.
Process of the 2020 ASUCD Environmental Bylaw Overhaul
The ASUCD Guide to Environmental Sustainability chapter of the ASUCD Bylaws was rewritten by EPPC Commissioners Maya Bhadury, Amaris Fraley, Forrest Pasturel, and Carly Placencio to align ASUCD’s environmental guidelines with UCOP and UCD policy. The rewrite also included revisions to EPPC’s sustainability auditing duties to increase accountability within ASUCD. The rewritten bylaws were passed as ASUCD Senate Bill 32 on November 26, 2020.
The team relied heavily on the UCOP Sustainability Procurement Guidelines and UCOP Sustainable Practices Policy when drafting the revised bylaws. These are documents that outline procedures that all UC campuses must follow to improve sustainability, and goals that each university must meet. We thought it was important to codify these procedures and goals in the bylaws and modify them to suit the student body’s needs.
Section 1701 outlines the new audit procedures EPPC will be conducting. It defines which groups get audited (units/commissions/committees with budgets over $1,000), when audits are performed (fall and spring quarters), who receives the results of the audit (the ASUCD Controller), and EPPC’s responsibilities in administering the audit (be available for consultation and discussion of results). We decided that the Controller is allowed to take the results of the audit into account when making budgetary decisions to increase accountability among those being audited.
The next section of the bylaws covers five aspects of sustainability – purchasing, waste reduction, waste disposal, special events, and building procedures. We mandate that purchases are in line with UCOP policy, and reducing unnecessary purchasing is a priority. We also require those being audited to set zero waste goals that we monitor throughout the year. All events are required to be zero waste and have compost, recycling, and landfill bins present. We also encourage employees to reduce energy consumption by properly setting their thermostats and unplugging devices when not in use.
This revised chapter of the bylaws is far from complete; EPPC has plans to create a sustainability guide and certification structure, so groups being audited receive recognition for superior sustainability practices. But for now, we’re excited that initial revisions have been made to this vital chapter of the ASCUD bylaws.