About the Fund
The Student Green Energy Fund was launched in 2011 to support the University of South Florida's commitment to reduce and eventually eliminate greenhouse gas emissions from the Tampa campus.
Making a Commitment
The American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment, signed by USF President Judy Genshaft in 2008, obligates USF-Tampa to conduct an annual greenhouse gas emissions inventory and develop a long-term Climate Action Plan (CAP) to reduce and, eventually, eliminate greenhouse gas emissions from the Tampa campus operations and infrastructure.
In 2009, the USF Office of Sustainability was established to oversee these requirements (USF Policy 10-051). Since then, the Office has created a greenhouse gas inventory (baseline AY 2007-2008) and a CAP. One of the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions identified by the CAP is energy consumption by the University. The CAP concludes that energy consumption must be reduced to lower greenhouse gas emissions and energy costs.
Funding the Effort
In order to fund this important campus initiative, USF established the Student Green Energy Fee. The Student Green Energy Fee assists the University of South Florida with conserving energy, reducing energy costs, lowering greenhouse gas emissions, promoting renewable energy technologies, reducing water usage and/or increasing resource sustainability. With approval from the Florida Board of Governors on March 24, 2011, students at each campus vote in a study body referendum every three years to determine if they support the fee and at what rate. The most recent referendum for the Tampa Campus were certified by the Election Rules Commission on February 28, 2014. The referendum passed with 69 percent of students voting to approve the fee at the rate listed above. The next referendum will take place in the spring semester of 2017.