URI Strategic Plan for Campus Sustainability Transportation
Transportation on campus presents one of URI’s more difficult emissions mitigation projects because, in most cases, it is not possible to have direct control over commuter behavior. However, projects can be implemented to encourage and support more desirable commuting patterns.
A green house gas (GHG) emissions inventory performed in 2009 reports that commuting to the Kingston (main) campus accounts for approximately 28% of URI’s total emissions. The inventory takes into account the campus fleet emissions as well as commuting to and from campus by undergraduate students, staff, and faculty members, but does not contain emissions data for air travel. Data for air travel was not available in 2009, when the original inventory was performed and the State of Rhode Island’s previous contracted travel agency was in place. The university’s new agency does maintain the data needed to update the GHG emissions related to air travel, and recent research by students of a civil engineering class shows that there is an opportunity to significantly reduce the campus’ overall emissions by limiting air travel.
The goals developed to address transportation issues on URI’s campus focus on the transition to biodiesel use for fleet vehicles, reducing the number of single-occupancy vehicle (SOV) commuting, and expanding transportation and alternative fuel research, including alternatives to business travel.
URI Transportation Goals:
1. Decrease GHG emissions of URI's fleet vehicles by 3k MTCO2e by the year 2015
2. Reduce by 7% the number of single-occupancy vehicle (SOV) trips taken by students, staff, and faculty to/from campus
3. Expand and encourage transportation and alternative fuels research
The URI Transportation Sustainability Working Group is developing strategies and action items to help meet each of these goals. If you have any questions about our efforts please contact the Sustainability Office viaemailor any one of the members listed below. Or, better yet, join us in our work. Students, staff, faculty and members of the community are welcome to work with us on campus.
Dr. Robert Drapeau, Director of Public Safety
Wendy Lucht, Coordinator, Ocean State Clean Cities Coalition at URI
Norman Mundorf, Professor, Communication Studies
Deborah Rosen, Executive Director, URI Transportation Center
Rachel Sholly, Associate Director, URI Outreach Center
A center at the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography (GSO) that helps coastal communities, both locally and worldwide, plan for the wise use of sea-based resources, such as fish stocks and offshore wind power, has secured $659,238 in grant funds for its programs.