Inclusive Sustainability Plan 2020

Photo: CSUMB students planting trees

Three Core Goals

  1. Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and achieve carbon neutrality by 2030
  2. Plant 2,030 trees
  3. Divert 90% of waste from landfill

Download the Inclusive Sustainability Plan 2020.

To learn more, read CSU Monterey Bay's Carbon Neutrality Roadmap.

  • The university has developed core goals that focus the campus community on three priority areas and serve as guideposts to unify the campus around a bold vision for sustainability. By aligning around these goals, CSU Monterey Bay can continue to be a leader and truly move the needle.

    While efforts will be made to reach all of the strategies in this plan, by focusing communication, outreach and engagement efforts on these core goals, we can channel our collective effort to make a real difference for our campus and our global community.

    In addition, every member of our campus community will be encouraged and expected to identify a way in which they can support these goals. This will allow a focused effort while still allowing for freedom of action. CSUMB is a campus that cares and a campus that gives back, actions taken to support these goals will collectively make a lasting difference.

  • This plan includes 12 topic areas with Environmental Justice and Inclusion being at the core as well as integrated throughout the plan. The goals and recommendations in each topic area consider existing campus guiding documents and plans, as shown in the exterior rings of the wheel. The 12 topic areas are categorized into relevant themes. Themes which are found in existing plans and guidelines: Student Success (Master Plan and Strategic Plan), Stewardship (Master Plan and Strategic Plan) and Placemaking (Master Plan and Living Community Challenge). The Sustainability Tracking Assessment and Rating System Report provides data collection and consistent review of metrics that support efforts in every topic area identified.

  • n the 2019 Student Experience Survey, over 60% of students indicated that sustainability was important or very important factor in their decision to attend CSUMB. The percentage was even higher for under-represented minority students, students with lower GPAs and students with Pell grants. Serving our students is the core mission of CSUMB and deeply integrating sustainability into all areas of campus operations will ensure the grandchildren and great-grand children of our current students will continue to thrive at CSUMB.

    • 2007 - Associated Students fund an Environmental Committee
    • 2009 - Dining Commons and Otter Express achieve LEED Silver certification
    • 2011 - 1 MW solar installation complete
    • 2011 - Begin using Sustainability Tracking Assessment and Rating System (STARS)
    • 2013 - CSUMB completes first Climate Action Plan
    • 2013 - Launch Environmental Studies and Marine Science program
    • 2014 - Board of Regents approve CSU Sustainability Policy
    • 2014 - Sustainable Otters Living Learning Program - A sustainability focused residential living learning program launches in Student Housing & Residential Life
    • 2015 - Sustainable Hospitality program in College of Business launches
    • 2016 - Business and Information Technology building receives Platinum LEED certification
    • 2016 - First Sustainability Director hired
    • 2017 - First campus to register for Living Community Challenge
    • 2018 - First campus to develop an approved Living Community Challenge Vision Plan
    • 2019 - College of Arts Humanities and Social Sciences building on track to achieve LEED Gold Certification
  • In addition, the goals and recommendations below specifically address the need to further align the work of sustainability and social justice.

    Promote Inclusive Sustainability

    We recognize that the impacts of environmental destruction and pollution disproportionately affect already marginalized communities by conscious design or systemic neglect.

    Therefore, “Inclusive Sustainability” is a commitment to improve the environment and the lives of those living within it regardless of income, class or identity.

    In fact, it seeks to promote all unique cultural and ethnic traditions that support, respect and provide stewardship for the earth and its resources.


    Encourage members of sustainability-focused groups to participate as members of diversity-focused groups, and vice versa.

    Consult with diversity-focused stakeholder groups on and off campus to ensure all viewpoints are integrated into sustainability-related projects and/or programs. (This may include campus, local and regional partners and contractors)

    Deepen the campus understanding of how sustainability and social justice are interconnected and respond to opportunities to address intersectional issues

    We acknowledge that environmental degradation is directly and intricately related to social injustices. Many of the recommendations listed throughout this plan aim to support this goal.


    Integrate sustainability and environmental justice into existing and planned social justice, equity and inclusion trainings and integrate inclusion and social justice into any future sustainability or climate change trainings.

    Examine campus service contracts and make social justice a criteria for doing business with the campus.

    Ensure all students wanting careers in sustainability, environmental conservation, or similar fields are included and have access to opportunities that will further their professional ambitions

    We recognize that barriers to participation for sustainability and environmental positions exist for marginalized community members who have equal interest and ambition to address environmental concerns.


    Support traditionally marginalized students holding positions in the Sustainability Office, or other dedicated sustainability student positions on campus (including but not limited to Dining, the Otter Cross Cultural Center and the Associated Student Sustainability Senator).

    “Inclusion is all and while the motivation and avenue for supporting sustainability may vary, the collective effort and intention is shared.” (Nizhoni Chow-Garcia and Ana Hernandez)