CSUN Sustainability 2020

CSUN's Drought Response

Brown is the New Green

In response to guidance from the State of California, Los Angeles County, and the City of Los Angeles, CSUN has undertaken a plan to drastically reduce outdoor water usage in order to conserve water and mitigate the impacts of the current drought. This involves turning off irrigation to almost 900,000 square feet of ornamental turf grass, and significantly reducing irrigation to another 2 million square feet of grass, only watering to preserve the health of CSUN's trees. Lawns that function as community spaces, as well as athletic fields, will be maintained. The map below shows the locations in which irrigation will be shut off or reduced to the minimum level required by the trees in that space. Approximately half of CSUN's water usage currently goes to maintaining the campus landscape.

Below is an overview of the campus areas that are impacted by water conservation efforts. View a complete interactive map of impacted campus areas here: https://csungis.maps.arcgis.com/apps/instant/basic/index.html?appid=387d5876d3f14d629de2e20c3592feef

Below are highlights from some of CSUN's other water conservation efforts:

  • CSUN has reduced its water consumption by 30% from the 06/07 baseline. This is equivalent to8.8 million gallons less per month than what CSUN used during the 06/07 baseline period.
  • CSUN has turned off 898,390 sqft of ornamental turf grass. This is expected to save 2,994,633 gallons per month.
  • CSUN has reduced 2,173,434 sqft of lawns with non-independent tree irrigation to only 2 days or less per week in order to keep our trees alive and healthy. This is expected to save 3,622,390 gallons per month.
  • CSUN will be upgrading all 62 campus irrigation controllers with smart irrigation controllers. This will begin in August 2022 and take approximately 2 months to complete. We are expecting to see a 10%-20% reduction in water consumption from these new controllers due to their enhanced ET technology and controllability.
  • Implementation of hydrogel turf injection in 5 separate ornamental turf grass locations on campus that will lead to a 50%-70% reduction in water consumption.
  • Relaunching campus irrigation mapping project to finish remaining controllers located on the east side of campus. This will allow us to fully understand the zones and vegetation type each controller is irrigating and relate that to water usage at the controller and zone level. 


Lawn Signage

Hydrogel Injection Lawn Treatment

This machine injects a water-absorbing polymer into the root zone of turf grass, helping the lawn retain water and reducing irrigation needs.

Irrigation Line Repair

Members of the CSUN Grounds Shop repair a main irrigation line.

Upgrading Irrigation Controllers

An upgraded irrigation controller is installed, allowing for better programming of irrigation settings.