Sustainability and Climate Action

Work with us at SHCS

Across our services and operations in SHCS, we have many unique opportunities to help UBC reach its climate action and sustainability goals—and we are more committed than ever.

Over the years, we have worked closely with our partners, at UBC and beyond, to increase the sustainability of our operations and buildings, support leading research, engage and educate our students, faculty, staff and community, and take action toward UBC’s numerous sustainability and climate action plans, in addition to the UBC Strategic Plan.

Climate action framework

In response to UBC’s Climate Action Plan 2030, we have redeveloped our climate action framework to align and prioritize our efforts over the coming years.


Five different, yet interrelated, themes emerged based on the unique opportunities within SHCS.

Buildings and embodied carbon

Reducing GHG emissions throughout the entire building lifecycle

Sustainable transportation and fleet

Sustainable transportation opportunities and low-emissions vehicle fleet

Food systems

Enhancing our sustainable, local and low-emissions food system

Waste, circularity and procurement

Zero waste, the circular economy and a sustainable procurement strategy

Engagement and capacity building

Awareness and education, plus individual and collective action

A balanced approach

Our goal is to establish a consistent and balanced approach to determine the most effective strategy and actions. This approach takes into account UBC’s strategic vision, commitments and goals, SHCS commitments and business objectives, and numerous considerations and guiding principles, such as the highest impact actions, affect on our services, operations and community members, implications to social and financial wellbeing, technological opportunities or limitations, and more.

“It is a privilege to be at a place where we are redefining how we measure success in business to include sustainability, climate and human wellbeing metrics, in addition to financial performance.” — Ricky Biring, Associate Director, Facilities, Facilities and Building Services

SHCS CAP 2030 committee

In late-2023, SHCS formed the SHCS Climate Action Plan 2030 steering committee to develop our climate action framework and align our actions across SHCS.

  • Ricky Biring, Associate Director, Facilities, Facilities and Building Services
  • Andrew Parr, Associate Vice-President, SHCS
  • Jennifer Dowdeswell, Associate Director, Operational Learning & Development (VPS)
  • Debra Eng, Ancillary Energy Manager, Facilities and Building Services
  • Lisa Fisher, Director, Marketing and Communications
  • Brian Jones, Director, Parking Services
  • David Kiloh, Director, Facilities and Building Services
  • Paula McCready, Associate Director, Ancillary Procurement, Purchasing
  • Colin Moore, Director, Food Services
  • Lakshmi Sangaranarayanan, Director, Student Residence
  • David Speight, Executive Chef and Culinary Director, Food Services
  • Johanna Webber, Associate Director, Building Services, Facilities and Building Services

Who we work with

Sustainability and climate action efforts at UBC are a deeply collaborative endeavour.

Our key campus partners include:

Plus, we also support innovative research with faculties and departments—for example, our collaboration with the Faculty of Applied Science on UBC’s Renewable Energy Hub, the UBC Okanagan School of Engineering on Skeena residence, a passive house certified residence, or Brock Commons Tallwood House, one of the tallest mass timber hybrid buildings in the world.

Additionally, we work with vendors, suppliers and contractors, along with utility providers and governmental agencies, to meet our goals.

“Sharing the remarkable climate action work we do in SHCS with our students, employees and wider UBC community is a joy. Engaging the residents who live with us and guests who dine with us on how to contribute to those efforts can have a positive impact well beyond the time they spend at UBC. It is such inspiring work to be a part of.” — Lisa Fisher, Director, Marketing and Communications

What we’ve accomplished


EV charging stations: 90 for students, faculty, staff, and visitors and 10 for fleet


Zero emissions fleet vehicles: 7 electric and 5 hydrogen


Strategic Energy Management Plan


Renewable Energy Hub serving as a city-scale research testbed


Passive House certified student residence


LEED certified buildings in 9 residence areas


Transit pass subsidy program


Local food system partnerships


Waste reduction / circular economy initiatives


Climate-friendly food labels program


Sustainability Living Learning Community


8 sustainability award recipients

How we measure success

Success looks different for every initiative or project and a key piece of every plan is to identify project-specific metrics that align with UBC’s existing sustainability and CAP 2030 goals.

The SHCS steering committee will meet regularly to assess the status of our actions, if we’re on track to meet our goals and next steps to take to get there.

Learn more

Sustainability and climate action at UBC

Learn more about campus sustainability in Vancouver and the Okanagan. Plus, don’t miss the latest updates on UBC’s Climate Action Plan 2030: Vancouver | Okanagan.

Sustainability and climate action in SHCS

For more about sustainability and climate action in SHCS, check out these stories from the SHCS blog.