UCSB has a rich environmental culture. Students engage with many on-campus organizations that are affiliated with environmental justice, environmentalism, and/or sustainability. Below is a list of some of those organizations.

Glossary of Terms

Advocacy for All Animals (AAA)


We aim to bring together UCSB students who are passionate about Health, Environment, and Animal Rights through advocacy, outreach, and education.

Associated Students Bike Committee

Website: https://bikes.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: bikecomm@as.ucsb.edu

The AS Bike Committee is a unique component of the Associated Students community; it is a place where passionate advocacy for bicycle safety and a clear voice for consideration of bicycles in campus planning have come together.  We fund bike improvements on campus, and participate in social and outreach events throughout the year with our $2.96 per student per quarter lock-in fee.

Associated Students Bike Shop

Website: https://bikeshop.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: bikeshop@as.ucsb.edu

Serving the students, faculty, staff, and alumni of UCSB since 1974, the Associated Students Bike Shop is a student-funded non-profit organization dedicated to education, service, and safety. We have everything needed to get your bike running safely and smoothly. You bring your ID card, your bike, your time, and an inclination to learn. We provide the tools and the advice. Anything else you need, we offer at the lowest possible prices.

Associated Students Coastal Fund

Website: https://coastalfund.as.ucsb.edu/   Facebook
Email: coastalfund@as.ucsb.edu

The Coastal Fund is a student initiative to enhance the UCSB campus coastline. The Coastal Fund provides funds to the local community to enhance, protect, and restore the shoreline through preservation, education, open access, research, and restoration.

Associated Students Commission On Student Well-Being (COSWB)

Website: https://coswb.as.ucsb.edu/   Instagram
Email: as-coswb-cochair1@ucsb.edu, as-coswb-cochair2@ucsb.edu

The Associated Students Commission on Student Well Being (COSWB) is committed to the general well being of UCSB undergraduates, with a particular emphasis on physical, mental, and nutritional well-being. Its purpose is to increase awareness, educate, advocate, and serve as a reference point for student social services. COSWB creates programs that provide a positive and comfortable environment for everyone on campus in order to stay true to our values of appreciating and preserving student well-being. Some events we host include, but are not limited to our Free Fitness Series, Meditation Sessions, Food Demos, Movie Screenings, Positive Psychology Workshops, and Guest Lectures.

Associated Students Community Affairs Board (CAB)

Website: https://cab.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: cab@as.ucsb.edu

The AS/UCSB Community Affairs Board (CAB), UCSB’s Volunteer Action Center, is dedicated to enhancing the educational experience of all UCSB Students by providing information and easy access to community service work. CAB works to bring UCSB and the community together in a meaningful way.

Associated Students Department of Public Worms

Website: https://worms.as.ucsb.edu/   Facebook
Email: asdpw@as.ucsb.edu

The Associated Students Department of Public Worms turns food waste into compost to be used to grow fresh produce for fellow students at the University of California Santa Barbara, thus creating a closed-loop food system on campus. We practice and promote sustainable agricultural techniques while educating the community about the importance of composting and gardening.

Associated Students Environmental Affairs Board (EAB)

Website: https://eab.as.ucsb.edu/   Facebook   Instagram
Email: eab@as.ucsb.edu

The Environmental Affairs Board (EAB) strives to protect, preserve and enhance the natural environment, principally at UCSB and its surrounding communities, but also broadly. EAB focuses on sustainability within ecology, agriculture, energy, climate change, health, the economy, and environmental justice and racism, as such issues have a direct relation to the environment. EAB coordinates with other groups to promote environmental awareness throughout the University and the surrounding communities, as well as at the state, national and global level.

Associated Students Environmental Justice Alliance (EJA)

Email: environmentaljustice@as.ucsb.edu

The Environmental Justice Alliance's mission is to amplify the awareness of and action towards environmental justice. This Alliance serves UC Santa Barbara and local communities by maintaining respectful interactions, by collaborating with organizations and communities, and by raising attention towards local, national, and global environmental injustices. The Alliance encourages intersectional awareness and inclusion with the environmental movement and other related movements by prioritizing the safety, experiences, and viewpoints of Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC) and people of diverse gender and sexual identities in its decisions, events, and activities.

Associated Students Food Bank

Website: https://foodbank.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: asfoodbank@as.ucsb.edu

The AS Food Bank is an on-campus pantry service that aims to both alleviate hunger and resolve the systemic issue of food insecurity within our student community. Eligible students can visit on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays to collect a variety of food items, free of charge. Recently, the Food Bank incorporated refrigeration to their pantry and food collection services in order to provide a larger range of fresh, healthy produce.

Beyond finalizing the renovations, the committee is dedicated to working on an outreach campaign to ensure students are aware of the resources available to them. Our core team is comprised of individuals knowledgeable about food security. We’re always willing to collaborate with organizations that want to help provide students with resources for leading a healthy, sustainable lifestyle.

Associated Students Human Rights Board

Email: hrbcochair@as.ucsb.edu

The Human Rights Board of Associated Students serves as a forum centered on facilitating and amplifying the interaction of students groups – both within UCSB and our greater community. The Board recognizes their mission of inclusively by creating forum that encourages, advocates, and promotes respectful and honest communication regarding the education and awareness of basic human rights principles.

Associated Students Recycling

Website: https://recycling.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: recycling@as.ucsb.edu

Our mission is to reduce waste at UCSB both through direct collection and through education and information sharing. We believe that true environmental progress requires direct, hands-on action and personal responsibility, not just ideals and slogans. We, therefore, are deeply committed to the day-to-day recycling, composting, and electronic waste collection services that have helped make UCSB a state and national leader in waste reduction. At the same time, we recognize that teaching students and staff how to recycle, compost, and reduce waste can have a huge impact both on and off-campus, and is the only way to achieve lasting change. Recycling and composting are great ways to decrease not only the amount of waste being sent to landfills every day, but also to reduce the need to harvest new materials from environmentally destructive processes like mining and timber collection. E-waste is another concern that AS Recycling addresses, as more and more electronic devices are replaced and discarded. All e-waste from a UC campus is recycled with the strongest environmental standards. We value our campus and community, and are committed to a goal of zero waste at UCSB!

Associated Students Zero Waste Committee

Website: https://zerowaste.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: zerowaste@as.ucsb.edu

The Zero Waste Committee is comprised of a group of students determined dedicated to designing and implementing projects to help UCSB achieve the UC-wide Zero Waste goal by 2020. We collaborate with other environmental groups on campus to increase public awareness through events. We work with various entities on campus to help eliminate sources of waste and encourage zero waste habits.

California Student Public Interest Research Group (CALPIRG Students)

Website: https://calpirgstudents.org/chapters/uc-santa-barbara/
Email: oliwanag@calpirgstudents.org

CALPIRG Students is an independent statewide student organization that works on issues like environmental protection, consumer protection, and hunger and homelessness. For nearly 35 years students with their campus PIRG chapters have been making a real difference in people’s lives and winning concrete changes to build a better world. We give students the skills and opportunity to practice effective citizenship. Both here on campus and out in the world, we mobilize students to investigate big social problems, come up with practical solutions, convince the media and public to pay attention, and get decision-makers to act.

Climate Reality Project Campus Corps at UCSB

Email: gabrielledashiell@gmail.com

The Climate Reality Project Campus Corps at UCSB’s mission is to move campuses (UCSB campus) to 100% renewable energy, while educating and engaging students nationwide in supporting and achieving bold national climate policies.

Edible Campus Program

Website: https://www.sustainability.ucsb.edu/edible-campus   Facebook   Instagram
Email: kcmaynard@ucsb.edu

The Edible Campus Project aims to address local food insecurity by repurposing underutilized spaces for food production, turning waste into food, and engaging students as growers and producers. Co-led by the AS Department of Public Worms, AS Food Bank, and the UCSB Sustainability Program, this project empowers the campus community, especially students, to be responsible stewards and leaders of our food system. We train students in practices that address social, economic, and environmental aspects of sustainability and help them to reclaim their personal connection to the land and their food.

Current Projects

The following three different projects, which have been previously established, continue to be nurtured and sustained, producing 25,000 pounds of food a year that will be given to UCSB students through the AS Food Bank or other direct venues.

Engineers Without Borders (EWB)

Email: ewb.ucsbgauchos@gmail.com

Engineers Without Borders – UCSB is a student run organization that partners with disadvantaged communities to improve their quality of life. We do this through implementation of environmentally and economically sustainable engineering projects. We are a chapter of the much larger national organization, EWB – USA. As a part of this organization, it is our duty to form relationships with specific communities in need, and develop the necessary solutions to assist these communities. For example, we have two projects, one in Kenya and one in Rwanda. Our Kenya team is helping the local community gain access to clean water, while our Rwanda team is helping a village build a schoolhouse. Our organization is open to all majors!

Food, Nutrition, & Basic Skills Program (FNBS)

Website: https://foodbank.as.ucsb.edu/food-nutrition-and-basic-skills/
Email: kcmaynard@ucsb.edu

Many students come into the university environment with little knowledge regarding food, particularly nutrition, food preparation, grocery shopping, and budgeting. Without these skills, students may become food insecure, skipping meals and eating poorly for the sake of cost or convenience. It is our hope that through education, we can help students to eat well and fulfill their full potential here at UCSB.

The program consists of a free series of workshops in four tracks: Cooking and Nutrition, Connecting to your Food, Budgeting and Planning and Kitchen Basics.

Any student that completes one workshop in each track will receive a free kitchen start up kit!

Greenhouse and Garden Project

Website: https://ghgpucsb.blogspot.com/
Email: ghgpucsb@gmail.com

The Greenhouse and Garden Project is an enjoyable and educational organization at UCSB that welcomes students, faculty, and staff to maintain their own plot to garden on. Many students live in apartments that do not allow anywhere to plant a garden, which is what makes the GHGP so unique. We currently have over fifty members, each with their own plot(s) and full access to the greenhouse. With workdays and meetings once per quarter, it gives members a chance to interact with other gardeners, help with the upkeep of the whole garden/greenhouse, and discuss current issues.

Isla Vista Community Relations Commission (IVCRC)

Website: https://ivcrc.as.ucsb.edu/
Email: ivcrc@as.ucsb.edu

Isla Vista Community Relations Committee is responsible for the education of the campus and student communities regarding issues within Santa Barbara County and Isla Vista that have an effect on students. Such issues may include but are not limited to: safety, police/community relations, landlord/tenant relations, emergency and other vehicle access in Isla Vista, parking, and County and University funding for programs and services in Isla Vista.

Isla Vista Surfrider Foundation

Linktree   Instagram
Email: ivsurfrider@gmail.com

Isla Vista Surfrider is a chapter of the international Surfrider Foundation. We are a nonprofit dedicated to the protection and enjoyment of oceans, waves, and beaches through a powerful activist network. Started by surfers, our group consists of surfers and ocean enthusiasts alike who are dedicated to protecting local coastlines.

LabRATS (Laboratory Resources, Advocates, and Teamwork for Sustainability)

Website: https://www.sustainability.ucsb.edu/labrats
Email: jewel.persad@ucsb.edu

The Laboratory Resources, Advocates, and Teamwork for Sustainability (LabRATS) Program at UCSB assists researchers on campus in reducing their impact on the environment while also improving safety, encouraging good laboratory management practices, and promoting communication and resource sharing. Our program is uniquely prepared to adapt campus recycling, energy management, and sustainability practices to the unusual materials used and processes implemented in laboratories.

Oxfam America Club at UCSB

Website: https://www.oxfamamerica.org/
Email: info@oxfamamerica.org

Oxfam is a global movement of people working together to end the injustice of poverty. With 70 years of experience in more than 90 countries, Oxfam takes on the big issues that keep people poor: inequality, discrimination, and unequal access to resources including food, water, and land. We help people save lives in disasters, build stronger futures for themselves, and hold the powerful accountable.

Plastics Solutions

Website: https://sites.google.com/site/ucsbppc/
Email: plasticsolutionsucsb@gmail.com

Plastic Solutions at UC Santa Barbara is a student-led organization committed to educating students about the negative health and environmental impacts of single-use plastics. We are currently promoting the use of UC Santa Barbara Hydration Stations as an alternative to purchasing single-use plastic water bottles that pollute our coastlines. These stations provide filtered water to students free-of-charge at 31 different locations on campus. In addition to advocating the water stations, we have been involved with a campus-wide shift toward using 100% compostable products in campus eateries. In addition to this culture shift, the campus has successfully included language in their policies that promotes the reduced use of harmful materials such as styrofoam. While we are very excited about the positive changes we’ve seen, we continue to work toward our goal of banning single-use plastics altogether on our campus.

Program for the Assessment and Certification of the Environment and Sustainability (PACES)

Website: https://www.sustainability.ucsb.edu/paces
Email: kcmaynard@ucsb.edu

PACES recognizes leadership in campus sustainability and assists departments, event coordinators and sports teams in identifying new opportunities where they can further reduce their impact on the environment. We focus on empowering individuals to make changes towards sustainability and engage their direct community, whether that be department members, event coordinators and attendees, or athletic teammates, to do the same. PACES offers departments an office assessment, climate and sustainability action plan write up, and presentation for department members. A similar consultation service is offered to athletic teams. We also work with event coordinators to reduce costs and implement sustainable practices in efforts to certify them as Green Events. Participants in PACES receive advice regarding energy usage, waste disposal/reduction practices, office health, sustainable procurement, transportation, and more.

Renewable Energy Initiative (REI)

Website: https://www.sustainability.ucsb.edu/rei
Email: andrew.riley@sa.ucsb.edu

The REI GB was formed in September 2010 as a consultative and decision making student-majority governance board with fiduciary responsibility for the total proceeds from the Renewal Energy Initiative student fee that was passed in spring 2010 and went into effect fall 2010.

Residence Hall Association (RHA)

Website: https://www.rhaucsb.com/
Email: ucsbeacc@gmail.com

UCSB’s Residence Halls Association is the student government which represents the students living in UCSB’s Residence Halls. The students we represent vary in demographic makeup, abilities, identities, affiliations and other characteristics, yet we all are inhabitants of this world and care deeply about the environment. As we currently comprise around 8,000 students, our energy-, water-, and resource-usage is quite large, which is why we strive to create systems, programs, and collaborations which help to reduce our carbon footprint and impact on this planet.

Santa Barbara Student Housing Cooperative

Website: https://www.sbcoop.org/
Email: info@sbcoop.org

The purpose of the Santa Barbara Student Housing Co-op (SBSHC) is to provide low rent co-op housing regardless of gender, race, social, political, or religious affiliation, and thereby influencing the community to eliminate prejudice and discrimination in the community. SBSHC strives to engage in continuous educational programs that further the principles of cooperation through mutual, self-help living at a minimal cost. Members live sustainably through the direct sharing of everyday resources. From simply sharing one vacuum with eighteen people, to growing vegetables, to communal kitchens and bathrooms, living communally reduces energy and water consumption as well as the amount of everyday (often made of plastic) things that individuals use. SBSHC strives to keep rates affordable so sustainable living in accessible to everyone; the Co-op is run by a member-majority Board of Directors that meets approximately twice a month. E-coalition members should contact info@sbcoop.org if they’d like to be on the meeting agenda.

The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF)

Website: https://www.sustainability.ucsb.edu/tgif
Email: jewel.persad@ucsb.edu

The Green Initiative Fund (TGIF) provides funding for projects which “green” our campus and reduce the University’s impact on the environment. TGIF allocates funds to projects that increase the amount of renewable energy used on campus, increase energy efficiency, and reduce the amount of waste created (GHGs) by our University. Portions of the fund will support education initiatives, student aid (via return to aid), and internships. TGIF is administered through a student-majority governance board. TGIF was the first green fee in the UC system. It was created by students in the spring of 2006 with a charge to “reduce the University’s impact on the environment.” Students voted with an overwhelming majority to pay $3.47 per quarter, contributing approximately $170,000 a year towards TGIF. The same fee was renewed in the spring of 2010, 2014, and 2018 for another four years each.

The Wildlife Society

Email: ucsbwildlifesociety@gmail.com

This organization is the student chapter of a larger national network of wildlife professionals. Our main goal is to work to prepare students for a career in the wildlife profession. Alongside this primary goal we aim to promote environmental stewardship, provide opportunities for jobs, internships and volunteer positions within the wildlife profession and gain a wholesome knowledge of local wildlife.

UC Carbon Neutrality Initiative (CNI)

Website: https://www.universityofcalifornia.edu/impact/climate-leadership

In November 2013, President Napolitano announced the Carbon Neutrality Initiative. The initiative commits the UC buildings and vehicle fleet to emitting net zero greenhouse gases of Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions* by 2025 to help mitigate the UC contribution to global climate disruption and end its reliance on fossil fuels. The initiative calls upon climate research, improving energy efficiency, increasing renewable energy, and implementing related strategies to reduce carbon emissions.

President Napolitano had formed a Global Climate Leadership Council composed of scientists, administrators, students, and experts to advise the UC on energy services, applicable research, medical center climate action, sustainability policy, faculty and student engagement, health sciences and services, financial strategies and communications to achieve the 2025 goal.  Find out more about the initiative here.

With partnership with Vox, the University of California also created a video series, Climate Lab, to conceptualize climate change solutions and methods of thinking about it.

Videos include:

Why humans are so bad at thinking about climate change
Going green shouldn’t be this hard
Why your old phones collect in a junk drawer of sadness
Food waste is the world’s dumbest problem

UC Carbon Neutrality at UCSB

Over the last couple of years, our campus has been successful in advancing the goals of the initiative through improvements in energy efficiency, renewable energy, and outreach and education.

UCSB had already achieved the 2014 and 2020 goals to reduce GHG emissions first to 2000 then 1990 levels. Chancellor Henry Yang signed a pledge in accordance with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Conference of Parties (COP 21) and many staff, students, and faculty have been working towards carbon neutrality through engagement, research, and project implementation.

UCSB is currently installing over 5 megawatts of solar on campus. This will account for about 11 percent the university’s energy needs.

*Emission Scopes

• Scope 1- Direct Emissions: on-site natural gas, diesel and propane combustion; campus fleet emissions; marine vessel emissions; and fugitive emissions
• Scope 2- Indirect Emissions: purchased electricity
• Scope 3- Indirect Emissions (Other): University-funded business air travel and student staff and faculty commuting

UC Global Food Initiative (GFI)

Website: https://www.ucop.edu/global-food-initiative/index.html

The UC Global Food Initiative was launched in 2014 by UC President, Janet Napolitano, with the vision of sustainably and nutritiously feeding the world’s population by 2025. UC GFI aims to make the UC system a pioneer in improving food security, health, and sustainability. In order to achieve success, the initiative identifies the best and most sustainable practices that can be applied worldwide using UC research to improve local and global food systems, as well as driving and implementing food policy discussions.

UC GFI consists of 23 working groups on all 10 campuses across 5 topic areas including: production, sourcing, education and communication, policy and public impact, and access and security.

UCSB Sustainability Internship Program

Website: https://www.sustainability.ucsb.edu/ucsb-sustainability-internship-program
Email: kcmaynard@ucsb.edu

The UCSB Sustainability Internship Program offers a wide array of opportunities for current undergraduate and graduate students to participate in campus and community based programs and initiatives. We serve as a launching point for new internship projects, much like an incubator for start-up companies. These opportunities include paid, academic credit, and volunteer-based internships and volunteer activities. Our home office is based in the Department of Geography.

Your Children’s Trees at UCSB

Website: https://www.yourchildrenstrees.org/   Facebook
Email: yourchildrenstrees@gmail.com

Your Children’s Trees is run by students who wish to better the beauty and environment of Santa Barbara by planting native trees. Our current project is the establishment of a native Oak Woodland at Coal Oil Point Reserve.

We provide technical urban forestry expertise and planting equipment for organizations interested in tree planting projects in Santa Barbara. Occasional tree plantings are conducted in the Santa Barbara area to improve coastal runoff for a overall healthier ecosystem.
We wish to:
1) improve storm water management – reducing runoff pollution in waterways leading to the ocean
2) Improve air quality benefits
3) Use seeds and shoots from local watersheds to sustain local genetic pools

We also wish to educate youth about the important role of science in preserving nature through “Science Nights” at local schools.
We will post upcoming events on both this facebook page and twitter page

Anyone is welcome to join who has an interest in any of these goals! Whether its the plantings of small acorn shoots or educating local youth about the trees around them, we’d love you to join our cause. Contact either the phone number or email listed to get more info on how to become a member today!