Water & Sustainable Sites
GOAL: Net zero water by square footage. Reduce water use by 25M gallons.
Baseline 2013: 91,948,907 gallons
2020: 41,501,606 gallons
Goal: 69,116,801 gallons
UNO Water Consumption
For UNO, water and sustainable sites are important due to the location of the Dodge, Scott, and Center campuses in the Little Papillion Creek watershed and because water is an important resource in Nebraska
Water conservation practices – such as efficient fixtures and behavior changes – not only protect the environment but can also save money. Traditional landscaping practices require a great deal of water, energy, labor, and other resources. By maintaining the campus landscape in a more sustainable manner, the university is able to conserve resources, reduce waste, and prevent pollution.
General Water & Landscaping Programs
UNO renovated buildings and retrofitted water-saving fixtures (low flow toilets, urinals, shower heads, and faucets). In addition, rainfall sensitive irrigation controllers are being retrofitted to campus irrigation systems. Tree branches and yard waste are collected and taken to Terry Hughes Tree Service, where they are mulched and returned to UNO for landscaping use. Corn-derived de-icer has replaced salt for use on circulation roads in winter.
Fescue and Buffalograss have replaced Bluegrass as the turfgrass of choice; native tallgrass planting have been added in place of traditional turfgrass; and ornamental grasses, rockscapes, and perennial plantings have replaced turfgrass in many places.
Sustainable Site Features
Bioretention Garden (Welcome Center)
Captures stormwater collected from rooftops, paved areas, and landscaping after each storm event and infiltrates the runoff into the soil within 12-24 hours.
UNO Native Garden
Located between Kayser Hall & Roskens Hall, this Indigenous Garden is home to native and food producing plants.
CEC Rain Garden
Located between the CEC and CPACS, this rain garden represents the best of community partnerships and campus engagement while creating a beautiful biodiverse habitat for butterflies and people.
In 2021, student volunteers from UNO will be remarking the university’s stormwater drains with “No Dumping – leads to waterways” decals across campus in an effort to reduce contaminants entering our water systems from on campus. These efforts will be combined with campus education and outreach opportunities about water pollution and stormwater management. Regular volunteer cleanup sessions will be organized to pick up trash and other debris from waterways through and around campus.