January 12, 2009


SUBJECT:    UC San Diego’s Sustainability 2.0 Initiative

We are pleased to announce the establishment of UC San Diego's Sustainability 2.0 Initiative. This initiative builds on our historically strong disciplinary and interdisciplinary research enterprise and the foundation established by our campus that has helped unravel the causes of global warming. UC San Diego is now creating an umbrella for a coordinated campus-wide effort to advance our understanding of the scientific, economic, and social issues involved in the sustainable stewardship of planet earth in the 21st century.

A key element of the Sustainability 2.0 initiative will be the creation of new faculty FTEs, each representing a substantial investment by our campus. Under the leadership of Senior Vice Chancellor Paul Drake, searches for six new positions have been announced, The new faculty will strengthen our expertise in areas that include photosynthesis, microbial ecology, atmospheric aerosols, environmental materials, alternative energy materials & technologies, and environmental economics related to resources and policy. They will advance departmental and ORU initiatives related to sustainability across the entire UCSD campus.

A related recent development is that the Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) has been awarded $12 million by the U.S. Department of Commerce/National Institute of Standards and Technology to construct a new laboratory building on the Scripps campus for research on marine ecosystem forecasting. This new building will become a resource for marine ecological research at Scripps and for other national and international ocean science organizations that address the management of marine resources. The recently announced Revelle Chair in SIO will enhance our strength in climate and environment.

Our campus is a living laboratory for innovation in sustainability and has been recognized with numerous awards, While many universities are greening their campuses using traditional methods, Sustainability 1.0, UC San Diego is taking the next step by engaging faculty, staff, and students in prototyping new technologies and approaches that we call Sustainability 2.0. Under the leadership of Vice Chancellors Gary Matthews and Steve Relyea and in partnership with UC San Diego's Center for Energy Research, led by Farrokh Najmabadi, and other campus academic units, we will continue to identify means to reduce energy usage and to enhance our reliance upon renewable energy sources, such as photovoltaics, fuel cells, wind, and algal biofuels.

A Sustainability Solutions Institute (SSI) is being formed as part of Sustainability 2.0 as a result of a campus report, The SSI will provide administrative and financial resources to enable faculty and students to work in interdisciplinary teams – joined by practitioners from government, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector – on solutions-oriented research that will create knowledge and translate it into policy needed to make better environmental decisions. The SSI will initially be led by Director Paul Linden and Deputy Directors Ralph Keeling and Vish Krishnan.

To plan additional elements of Sustainability 2.0, we will be forming a Joint Senate-Administration Task Force in the near future. The Task Force will identify emerging areas of opportunity for the campus related to sustainability and appropriate academic and governing structures to nurture them.

In partnership with our students, we are planning a Sustainability Resource Center that will be located at the Price Center. Campus Sustainability Coordinator Maggie Souder will be leading this effort and will be UC San Diego's point of contact for questions regarding Sustainability 2.0. Details related to Sustainability 2.0 projects and events can be found at Finally, we take this opportunity to thank Charles Kennel and Paul Linden for their leadership of the Environment and Sustainability Initiative (ESI), which helped provide the foundation for Sustainability 2.0 and is now being phased out to facilitate the new initiatives described above.

We hope you will join us in the exciting research, education and outreach opportunities that Sustainability 2.0 will provide to our campus and the communities we serve.

Marye Anne Fox

Daniel Donoghue
Academic Senate, San Diego Division