Recent rankings point to UB’s standing as a leader in sustainability

New solar arrays on university-owned property, such as this one on the North Campus, are one way UB is leveraging renewable energy to achieve its aggressive goal of being climate neutral by 2030. Photo: Douglas Levere

Release Date: May 2, 2022

Portrait of UB Provost A. Scott Weber.
“The Impact Rankings provide globally minded universities like UB a very useful metric that helps us assess our progress in meeting the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals. ”
A. Scott Weber, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs
University at Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. — The University at Buffalo has once again been recognized as a leader in sustainability in higher education, garnering high marks in two recent rankings.

UB fared well across a number of categories in the Times Higher Education 2022 Impact Rankings, which assess universities around the globe against the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). This year’s Impact Rankings included a record 1,406 universities from 106 countries/regions. Participants can submit institutional data for as few or as many SDGs as they wish.

As part of its updated climate action plan, UB has an aggressive goal of achieving net-zero emissions by 2030. Each of the solutions in UB’s 10 in 10, a roadmap of strategies that will help the university achieve this goal, ties into multiple SDGs.

“The Impact Rankings provide globally minded universities like UB a very useful metric that helps us assess our progress in meeting the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals,” says A. Scott Weber, UB’s provost and executive vice president for academic affairs.

“UB is proud to once again be rated highly for its work in these endeavors, and I commend the efforts of our faculty, staff and students, whose work each day helps us move the needle,” Weber said.

UB ranked No. 1 among all U.S. colleges and universities in good health and wellbeing, which measures universities’ research on key diseases and conditions, as well as their support for health care professions, and the health of students and staff. UB scored 85.9 out of a possible 100 in this SDG, which included 1,101 universities from 98 countries/regions.

For climate action, UB was No. 2 out of all U.S. schools, second to Arizona State University, and eighth among 674 colleges and universities globally. The pool of universities that submitted to this category increased by 108 institutions compared to last year. Despite this large increase in submissions, UB maintained its status as a top 10 university in this SDG that measures universities’ research on climate change, their use of energy and their preparations for dealing with the consequences of climate change.

UB came in at No. 4 among U.S. institutions in affordable and clean energy, which measures universities’ research related to energy, their energy use and policies, and their commitment to promoting energy efficiency in the wider community. A total of 705 institutions from 85 countries/regions submitted data for this SDG.

In sustainable cities and communities, UB ranks seventh among U.S. colleges and universities and is 67th globally, with 783 institutions participating.

UB 5th in EPA Top 30

Meanwhile, UB ranks fifth nationally in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership Top 30 College & University ratings, buoyed by the university’s use of 224,915,865 kilowatt hours of annual green power usage leveraging solar and wind energy.

EPA established the Green Power Partnership in 2001 to encourage organizations to use green power voluntarily to protect human health and the environment.

“Signs of the university’s continued commitment to clean energy can be seen across campus, with the installation of new electric vehicle charging stations and new solar arrays on university-owned property,” says Laura Hubbard, UB’s vice president for finance and administration. “As we work to achieve our goal of becoming climate neutral by 2030, we will work diligently to find innovative new ways of leveraging renewable energy on campus.”

UB comes in at No. 66 in the partnership’s National Top 100, which includes major corporations like Microsoft, Google and Target, as well as municipalities.

Media Contact Information

David J. Hill
Director of News Content
Public Health, Architecture, Urban and Regional Planning, Sustainability
Tel: 716-645-4651