The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) Grant Making Committee is pleased to announce the selected projects for the 2016/17 funding cycle! The Committee awarded funds to 23 projects. Below is an summary of the projects that you can expect to see completed within the next academic year.

UCSB Energy Dashboard ($5,011)
Funding will be used to design a public Energy Dashboard hosted on This dashboard will provide the UCSB community with real-time energy consumption information and will enable building energy use comparisons throughout campus.

Campbell Hall Lighting Retrofit ($18,160)
TGIF Funding will be used to retrofit Campbell Hall, the most widely used lecture hall at UCSB, with energy efficient, dimmable LED lights. The retrofit will include replacing 96, 100 watt incandescent well lights with 96, 31 watt LED, dimmable lights.

Optimizing solar energy at UCSB’s Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserve ($12,720)
Funding will be used to purchase and install one active indirect solar hot water system for the dorms at the Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Laboratory (SNARL), part of the Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserve located in Mammoth Lakes, CA.

Scholarships for the California Higher Education Sustainability Conference ($9,212)
This grant will provide financial support for 50 UCSB students and 15 faculty or staff to attend the California Higher Education Sustainability Conference (CHESC), June 24th to June 30th, here at our UC Santa Barbara campus. CHESC is an important gathering of key stakeholders from across the state of California who are working on UC System wide and state wide policies.

Food Recovery Pilot Project ($8,003)
The TGIF grant will be used to fund a Food Recovery Pilot Program on campus. The groups plan is to team up with a local nonprofit to conduct food pickups from the University Centers retail operations and deliver it to their distribution partner SB Rescue Mission (a homeless shelter in downtown Santa Barbara). Funding will be used for one year to implement the pilot, including the hiring of a student intern, purchasing supplies, and reimbursing volunteer gas mileage.

Case Study of -70°C ultra-low temperature freezers ($15,223)
This project will fund the purchase of two highly Energy efficient ultra-low temperature (ULT) freezers that will then be run for at least one year at -70°C instead of -80°C in order to quantitatively test the quality of sample storage over that time. Turning up ULT freezers by just 10°C can decrease energy consumption by over 40% in some cases, and has been done successfully at several universities, but the evidence regarding sample safety over time is largely anecdotal. Two faculty on campus have agreed to use their existing -80°C freezers as controls and create duplicate samples for comparison in a -70°C freezer over a one year period. Following this, the old freezers will be decommissioned and a report of their results will be produced in a publication style that can be shared with UCSB Environmental Health & Safety, University of California Office of the President, and the national green labs working group. In addition to the $15,223 TGIF awarded this project this year, the remaining $18,050 from last years freezer incentive program will be used for this project.

Greening of the UCSB’s Children’s Center ($14.252)
The Greening of the UCSB’s Children’s Center has been awarded $6,000 for the purchase and installation of two hydration stations (to reduce single use plastic bottles) at the Children’s Center, $1,500 for Curriculum materials, and $6,742 to hire a Green Curriculum Coordinator. The Green Curriculum Coordinator will be hired on a part-time basis, and will promote environmental literacy by integrating education for sustainable development to the children, staff, and families.

Increasing Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emission reduction of the North Campus Open Space (NCOS) Wetland Restoration Project through the Application of Biochar soil amendment ($18,085)  
The NCOS Wetland Restoration Project recaptures coastal wetlands previously developed into residential and industrial areas. Reestablishing the wetland will help mitigate flooding issues and simultaneously increase the land’s ability to act as a carbon sink for atmospheric greenhouse gases. TGIF funding will be used to purchase a carbon sequestering soil amendment, call biochar, thereby increasing the project’s total GHG emission reduction. Biochar is a charcoal-like substance typically associated with biomass energy production.

Increasing Diversity in Greenhouse Garden Project ($5,715)
Funding will be used to hire a student outreach coordinator for the Greenhouse and Garden Project. The student outreach coordinator will design and manage an outreach program that encourages low income students to participate in the Greenhouse Garden Project. The coordinator will also manage a ‘garden knowledge’ program where students cultivate a plot at the Greenhouse and Garden Project.

Urban Agriculture Education Series ($5,185)
Funding will be used for an urban agriculture educational series run by the edible campus program. The series will highlight the innovative ways that our community and others are addressing issues through creative efforts to grow food in urban and suburban spaces.

Replacing Paper Towels with Electric Hand Dryers in High Use Restrooms ($20,729)
TGIF funding will be used to purchase 20 electric hand dryers to convert the highest use restrooms in Girvetz, Physical Sciences Building North, North Hall, and Harold Frank Hall. Electric Hand-Dryers provide a quick, sanitary, and waste-free alternative to paper towels. In addition, an electric dryer uses less water, and exudes less carbon dioxide in its lifetime than does the process of creating and disposing of paper towels.

Replacing Paper Towels with Electric Hand Dryers in Bren Hall ($6,193)
Funding will be used by the Bren School Sustainability Committee (BSSC) to purchase and install 4 hand dryers in the bathrooms on 2L and 4L in Bren Hall. T

Replacing Paper Towels with Electric Hand Dryers in the Library ($5,000)
Funding will be used to install 4 hand dryers on the first floor of the Library.

HSSB Courtyard BigBelly ($7,410)
Funding will be used to purchase a set of BigBelly solar powered recycling, compost and landfill bins for the outdoor courtyard by the Humanities and Social Science Building (HSSB). HSSB is a hub of activity on campus and houses events, meetings, and study space for UCSB students. Currently, the only outdoor waste receptacles are two Bertha 4bin cluster which is serviced by A.S. Recycling. Bertha 4bin cluster receptacles contain only recycling and landfill bins. The BigBelly solar powered bins have a much larger capacity than the Bertha bins, and these bins would have a compost bin, which the Bertha bins do not have.

Note: The BigBelly units were installed by lot 22 instead of the proposed original location

Max R Trash Can ($2,603)
Partial funding was grated for the purchase one set of Max-R waste receptacles for Bren Hall. Max-R waste receptacles offer a more efficient alternative to UC Santa Barbara’s current waste management system.

Sticker wrap waste signage for UCEN Compost, Recycling, and Trash Receptacles ($3,255)
The UCen is about to convert its trash disposal process from a 2 bin system with commingled landfill and recycling, to a 3 bin system. Currently the risk of people putting the wrong items into containers is high because the signage is not as visible as it could be. TGIF funding will be used to purchase sticker wraps for all of the cans to make it more apparent to people using them what goes where and thereby reduce contamination and increase sustainability.

Theory of Change research for Energy Sustainability at UCSB ($1,906)
This project will research and develop a Theory of Change (TOC) for engaging students in the effort to achieve energy sustainability at UCSB. TGIF funding will also be used to hire a student intern.

Nerd Night ($2,500)
Nerd Night is an event where faculty from UCSB give informal and engaging talks about their research in a laidback environment. In the paste, locations like Giovanni’s Pizza in Isla Vista have been used. Nerd Night raises student awareness of faculty who contribute towards sustainable research and strives to build meaningful relationships between faculty, students, and the local community. Funding will be used to cover the cost of these events, including the sound system.

Replacing Dissection lamps for EEMB lab courses ($2,550)
Three laboratory courses (EEMB 111, 112, and 116) share equipment including dissection microscopes, dissection lamps, and compound microscopes. The dissection lamps are incandescent, which are inefficient, dim, and outdated. The funds from TGIF will be used to purchase energy efficient LED dissection lamps to replace all of the old incandescent lamps.

Nepantla Techna Calpulli Student Project ($3,700)
The Nepantla Techne Calpulli Student Project attempts to design and optimize an open source bike-mounted phone charger. Funding would be used to buy parts and supplies for the design and production of the phone charger.

UCSB Student Health Patient Transportation Program ($5,000)
TGIF funding will be used to purchase an electric golf cart devoted to student transportation.

The UCSB Student Health Patient Transportation program is intended to transport sick and/or injured students seen at Student Health to their homes in Isla Vista or anywhere on UCSB campus. The golf cart will also reduce fossil fuel emissions since it is electric, not gas-powered.

Refrigeration for A.S. Food Bank ($6,000)
The A.S. Food Bank will use the funding to purchase and install two refrigerators within our lounge area located on the third floor of the UCen. The Goal of the Food Bank is to decrease local food insecurity by bringing healthier and more sustainable food options that are accessible for undergraduates and graduate students. Refrigeration will allow the Edible Campus Program to supply campus grown produce to the Food Bank.

GIVE Project ($3,071)
Funding will be used to purchase supplies for the annual GIVE Sale. GIVE responds to the problems of overflowing dumpsters, accumulated trash, arson, and discarded useful and recyclable goods by asking students to donate their reusable and useful goods The GIVE project mitigates the impacts on the university and Isla Vista community each June as thousands of students move out of their residence halls and apartments. The donations are sold and the proceeds benefit organizations and projects that improve the quality of life in Isla Vista.