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Environmental Audit Report for the University of Manitoba: Fort

Garry Campus
By: Kelsey Margraf
Student #: 7740150
ENVR 3160 Assignment 2
Submitted: Nov. 16, 2016
1.0 - Executive Summary
In this report, first, background on the University of Manitoba and the scope of the
environmental audit is given. Next, the University of Manitoba's performance in their
management, operations, and facilities is measured and analyzed with respect to the following
identified areas of concern: Chemical Wastes and Hazardous Materials; Wastes Management
and Recycling Programs; Heating, Cooling and Lighting: Energy Use; and Water Use. Lastly,
recommendations and closing comments are given with respect to each concern area.

2.0 - Introduction
The University of Manitoba was founded in 1877 and was Western Canadas first
University1. As of fall of 2015, it had 29,929 students enrolled2. The University offers over 100
programs in a wide range of subject areas,3 and has two main campus locations: the Bannatyne
Campus, and the Fort Garry Campus4. The focus of this audit is the Fort Garry Campus, which is
roughly 279 hectares in size and is located in the Southernmost portion of Winnipeg, MB5. The
Red River lines the Eastern edge of the Campus, and Pembina Highway rests along the Western
edge5.
In September of 2016 University of Manitoba President David Barnard contacted
Margraf Consulting Co. requesting an environmental audit be performed in the hope to aid in the
accomplishment of objectives outlined in the University of Manitoba's Sustainability Policy6 and
Sustainability Strategy7. The University of Manitoba's 2016-2018 Sustainability Strategy states
that annual Sustainability Reports are to be released by the University of Manitoba's office of
Sustainability7. It is hoped that the findings of this environmental audit may be used in the
formulation of these future reports and to set future sustainability goals. This audit is also being
performed to ensure the University's compliance with policy and regulatory requirements in
identified concern areas.
Perhaps the most relevant Federal policy to the environmental performance of the
university's management, facilities and equipment would be the Canadian Environmental
Protection Act (CEPA) which, among other things, regulates the use and disposal of toxic
substances through tools such as Pollution Prevention Plans and regulations.8 The CEPA also
regulates transport of hazardous wastes between provinces, as well as reserves the right to charge
directors, officers and agents of an organization if it is proven that they "directed, authorized,
assented to, acquiesced in or participated in the commission of an offence."9
Provincial policies and regulations which are likely most relevant to the University's
operations include the following:

I. The Dangerous Goods Handling and Transportation Act


II. The Environment Act
III. The Sustainable Development Act
IV. The Waste Reduction and Prevention Act

At this time, the University's Sustainability Policy and Sustainability Strategy should also
be discussed. The Sustainability Policy includes the following objectives:

2.1 The University seeks to become a leader in campus sustainability. This entails
attention to the wise use of natural resources, pollution prevention, remediation of
adverse environmental impacts, full-cost accounting, implementing sustainable targets
and protocols and subsequently assessing their achievement, and continuing development
and promotion of sustainable development initiatives.

2.2 The University of Manitoba shall integrate sustainability principles in all levels of its
strategic planning and within its academic and administrative processes.

2.3 Our community faculty, staff, students, alumni and neighbours


shall be broadly involved and encouraged to participate in sustainability planning and
initiatives at the University. Priorities will be established in a participatory manner and in
recognition of potential financial constraints.6

The Sustainability Strategy 2016-2018, on the other hand, outlines Baseline


Sustainability Metrics, as well as specific goals, objectives, and plans for increased sustainability
in the areas of Resource Conservation and Efficiency, Transportation and Accessibility, Ecology
and Environment, Land Use, Climate, and Campus Life7. These documents, as with the above-
stated relevant federal and provincial legislation, will be taken into consideration in the Findings
section of this report, where it will be gauged whether the University's procedures comply.
2.0 - Methodology
In the completion of this report, only secondary sources were consulted. No actual
exploration of the University's operations, equipment, or facilities, was undertaken due to time
constraints. Only that information which was readily available on each of the below identified
areas of concern (listed in the Findings section of this paper) was considered in evaluating the
University's compliance with regulations, opportunities for reducing wastes, and identification of
potential liabilities through environmental damage. In some instances, this caused for an
insufficient amount of data available to make concrete conclusions and recommendations,
however, some fairly concrete assumptions could be made based on findings from the University
of Manitoba's website, documents published by the Office of Sustainability, documents released
by the Physical plant, one particular environmental audit conducted in 2002 on the University's
use and management of hazardous wastes and chemicals, and judgement of compliance with the
relevant acts, policies, and regulations.

3.0 - Audit Findings


In this section, a general overview of the most important findings will given in each of
the identified areas of concern.

3.1 - Chemical Wastes and Hazardous Materials


3.1.1 - Highlights
Waste management for hazardous materials and chemical wastes at the University was
found to be sufficient in that it was found that chemicals used in labs were dated so that older
supplies were used first, and in that biological wastes were found to be disposed of largely in
accordance with the University's biosafety guidelines10. Many labs had specific individuals in
charge of ordering more chemical supplies, which reduces the risk of over-ordering and the
production of excess hazardous and chemical wastes10.
Upon the evaluation of the University's Controlled Product Standard11, Hazardous Waste
Management documents12, Asbestos Management Program13, Biological Safety documents14, and
Chemical Safety documents (including WHMIS training)15 it is apparent that these safety
procedures have been created in accordance with the applicable local and regional legislation,
thereby signifying due diligence on the behalf of the University in ensuring regulatory
compliance in its dealings with Hazardous and Chemical Waste. The due diligence of the
University in dealing with Hazardous and Chemical wastes was again proven when it was found
that the University had a Phase II ESA conducted in 2012 on an area suspected of contamination
by petroleum hydrocarbon near the Water Works building on the Fort Garry Campus16, and that
same area is today listed on the Province of Manitoba's Impacted Sites list17. This signifies
compliance with the Contaminated Sites Remediation Act in reporting the existence of the
impacted site to the province18. A Hazardous Materials Assessment was also undertaken in July
2016, again signifying the University's diligence in evaluating what sorts of hazardous materials
may be present in a building before initiating demolition19.

3.1.2 - Lowlights
Although the Transportation of Dangerous Goods regulations state that individuals who
receive, transport or ship dangerous goods must be certified, it was found that most laboratories
at the university (where the majority of hazardous wastes come from) do not have a certified
individual in the lab 10. It was also found that while microscale techniques are being employed
satisfactorily in teaching labs, in research labs microscale chemistry techniques could be
implemented more often to reduce the production of hazardous wastes10. Some instances of
potentially unstable chemicals having been expired "past their safe timelines as outlined in [the
University's] Controlled Product Standard"10 were found, although these instances were quite few
in number.

3.2 - Wastes Management and Recycling Programs


3.2.1 - Highlights
On August 29th, 2015, the University of Manitoba's Waste Collection System underwent
changes, and under the new system the only things that can not be recycled on campus are waxed
paper, non-recyclable cutlery, Styrofoam and plastic bags20. Also under the new system, all
garbages are to be paired with recycling bins21. It was discovered that many food and drink
locations around campus provide discounts to students who bring and use their own reusable
mug from home, thereby encouraging a decrease in the University's total amount of wastes20. The
existence of the Re-Shop to recycle used office furnishings and supplies also helps in this
endeavour20. As stated above, the University of Manitoba's Sustainability Policy states that the
University "shall integrate sustainability principles in all levels of its strategic planning and
within its academic and administrative processes.6" Review of the Office of Sustainability's
Green Tips, Green Office/Classroom, and Green Meetings/Events postings reveals the
beginnings of such integration21. The University's Sustainability Strategy 2016 - 2018 recognizes
the importance of preventing waste in fostering campus sustainability7.

3.2.2 - Lowlights
Perhaps the above stated positive initiatives towards decreasing the University of
Manitoba's amount of waste going to landfills is the systemic change the University needed in
terms of waste prevention. It was found that for the 2014-2015 school year the University's total
waste production increased 1% from the 2013-2014 school year7. In addition for 2014- 2015, the
amount of waste going to landfill increased 4% from the previous year, and 15% from 2001-
20027. The amount of waste diverted from the landfill not surprisingly also decreased during
these time frames7. However, it was also discovered that after the implementation of the
University's new waste collection system, by October of 2015 recycling had increased by 52%21.
It is difficult to say what this means for other statistics associated with waste prevention for the
2015-2016 year, however, it is likely that substantial work remains in educating University of
Manitoba students and faculty about the various opportunities to reduce waste if the University
truly wants to achieve "leadership in campus sustainability.6"

3.3 - Heating, Cooling and Lighting: Energy Use


3.3.1 - Highlights
The Central Energy Plant on the Fort Garry Campus includes a Steam Plant for building
heating, a Heat Recovery System which extracts heat from the boiler exhaust gas and generates
energy savings (approximately $1400 per day), a Chilled Water Plant for circulation to buildings
for air conditioning, and an Emergency power Generator for instances of loss of electrical power
23
. Energy sources used in the Central Energy Plant to produce steam include Natural Gas (the
use of which has decreased by 39% since 1990), and Fuel Oil (which is only used as an
emergency back-up fuel)21. Hydroelectricity provided by MB Hydro is also distributed through
the campus23. 30% of the University's energy is from renewable energy sources,23 and the Fort
Garry Campus has reduced the use of electricity by 35% per square foot since 199023. Energy
Saving Technologies exist in some of the University's buildings such as EITC, Migizii Agamik,
the Pembina Hall Residence and the Wallace Building. "The University has adopted a LEED
Silver rating as the target certification for all new buildings."24 In 2014, the University applied
for funding to have lighting upgrades place in the Max Bell Centre, and Ventilation Upgrades in
the Engineering III Building, both of which would increase energy efficiency25. Energy Demand,
renewable energy as a percentage of total energy used, and energy use per weighted campus user
all decreased in the 2015/2015 year compared with the 2013/2014 year7.

3.3.2 - Lowlights
While the University's trend of the increased use of renewable energy and decreased use
of electricity overall signifies progress toward a more sustainable campus, work remains to be
done in increasing energy efficiency. In the 2014/2015 year, energy use intensity increased
slightly, and GHG emissions per weighted campus user did not change from the previous year 7.
No obvious instances of non-compliance with regulations exist in this area of concern, however,
the University must increase their use of renewable energy from 30%, if they truly wish to be " a
leader in campus sustainability," in accordance with their Sustainability Policy6.

3.4 - Water Use


3.4.1 - Highlights
The 2014-2015 Sustainability Strategy outlines the University's goal to decrease water
consumption by 10% in the next 3 years7. Since 1990, the University's total water usage has
decreased by 57% 24. Design standards at the University require that all plumbing projects
involve water conservation features, and many fixtures at the university have been replaced by
water-conserving devices24.

3.4.2 - Lowlights
In the 2014-1015 school year it was measured that potable water use, potable water use
intensity, and potable water use per weighted campus user all increased from the previous year
by 4%, and had increased by 42%, 16%, and 8% respectively since the 2001-2002 school year7.
Since it was stated that total water usage has decreased by 57% since 1990, this likely means that
potable water usage has increased despite this total water usage reduction. No apparent issues
with regulatory compliance appear to be present within this area of concern. However, to achieve
their goal as leaders in campus sustainability6, the University will have to continue with their
initiatives to decrease water usage -- particularly potable water usage -- on campus.

5.0 Conclusion and Recommendations


5.1 - Chemical Wastes and Hazardous Materials Recommendations
a) As soon as is conveniently possible, 1-2 members of each laboratory at the university of
Manitoba should become certified under the Dangerous Goods Act to receive, transport
and ship dangerous goods, as the failure to do so leaves the individuals doing so without
certification liable for a fine or incarceration, as well as the University liable to be fined,
with the potential for licenses administered under the Dangerous Goods Handling and
Transportation act to be revoked26.
b) An evaluation of whether microscale chemistry techniques could be used should be
implemented in all research labs on all research projects going forward, so as to minimize
the production of hazardous and chemical wastes.
c) Options for the substitution of potentially unstable chemicals used in University
laboratories should be explored so as to minimize the potential for unstable chemicals
expiring past their safe timelines. The University may also want to add to their Controlled
Products Standard methods to ensure compliance by Laboratory Supervisors, such as the
mandatory submission of completed laboratory safety inspection reports within a
specified time frame.
d) Although the University showed due diligence in dealing with the possibility of PHC
contamination, this occurrence could perhaps signify a need for improved management
plans to prevent against overfilling PHC tanks in the future, so as to avoid financial
liability. An evaluation of current management plans should be undertaken.

5.2 - Wastes Management and Recycling Programs Recommendations


a) Continue to and enhance efforts to educate the University staff, students and
administration about the opportunities to reduce waste on the Fort Garry Campus. It is
suspected that knowledge is especially lacking around the products that can and can not
be recycled, as well as knowledge of the existence of the Re-Shop and subsidized
beverage rates for those who bring a re-usable mug to particular food and beverage
outlets on campus.
b) Look into the possibility of expanding composting programs on campus to further reduce
waste and perhaps even reuse said compost in landscaping activities around campus.

5.3 - Heating, Cooling and Lighting: Energy Use Recommendations


a) Continue to develop initiatives and acquire funding for projects with the intent of
increasing energy efficiency on campus.
b) Continue to diversify from Natural Gas and Fuel Oil burning as sources of energy to
decrease GHG emissions and increase the percentage of total energy used on campus that
is from renewable energy.
c) Educate students and staff on what they can do to help the University be more energy
efficient.

5.4 - Water Use Recommendations


a) Increase the frequency, accessibility, and quality of public education campaigns geared
toward reducing water usage on campus.
b) Continue to meet and set goals concerned with reducing water consumption on campus.

In closing, within each of the areas of concern the University appears to be performing in
a fairly satisfactory manner. Very few instances of non-compliance with regulations and
possibility of liability were identified. Several methods for reducing, reusing, and recycling
wastes, and increasing energy efficiency were discussed. Work remains in many areas for the
University of Manitoba to become leaders in campus sustainability6.
6.0 References

1
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http://umanitoba.ca/about/
2
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3
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of Manitoba; [cited 2016 Nov 11]. Available from:
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10
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20
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21
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22
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