Although multiple new initiatives to conserve water have been made at Stanford, the University had been experimenting with ways to decrease water consumption even before the California drought and emergency regulations.
For example, since 2000, Stanford has reduced domestic water use by 20 percent — including removing water from outdoor decorative fountains in 2013, removing trays from dining halls and installing low-flush toilets.
Recycled water is used in academic buildings across campus. Some engineering buildings, such as Y2E2, new buildings in the medical school and buildings in the Graduate School of Business, use recycled water in the toilets and bathroom sinks.
New buildings at Stanford will be built to use 30 percent less energy and 25 percent less water than older buildings.
Additionally, earlier this year, the campus began a voluntary water conservation program which reduced the overall domestic water use by 11 percent. From 2000 to 2007, Stanford reportedly reduced water consumption from 2.7 million gallons a day to about 2.3 million gallons a day.
Furthermore, in March, Stanford broke ground on the Codiga Resource Recovery Center, which will test promising technologies for recovery of water and energy from wastewater.
According to Craig Criddle Ph.D. ’89, professor of civil and environmental engineering and who will later direct the Codiga Center, there are plans to conduct research focusing on these efforts this academic year.
For more information on Stanford’s current initiatives to curb water usage on campus, please read our extended feature.