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New York City Water Challenge to Universities

New York City is home to more university students than any other city in the country. As such, implementing water saving methods on university campuses offers a large opportunity to reduce citywide demand. The Water Challenge to Universities leverages this opportunity by engaging campus facility staff in water conservation strategies and fostering a water conservation ethic among students.

How the Challenge Works

For the Challenge, participating universities set a goal to voluntarily reduce their water usage by 5% from their baseline year. To achieve this goal, our water challenge team connects campus facility staff to a diverse forum of peers, industry experts, and sustainability organizations that provide the contacts, best practices, and technical assistance needed to realize meaningful reductions in water use and costs. At the end of the Challenge, participating universities will also be recognized for their water efficiency efforts. For more information, please contact waterchallenge@dep.nyc.gov.

Resources for Participants

About the New York City Water Challenges

The New York City Water Challenges are voluntary challenges designed to encourage non-residential groups to match the 5% citywide water consumption reduction goal. Participants are asked to calculate baseline water consumption, track water usage in their facilities for 12 to 24 months, develop water conservation plans, and attend meetings with DEP to discuss their progress. Challenge participants receive formal recognition from DEP for their efforts. DEP completed the Water Challenge to Hotels in 2014, the Water Challenge to Restaurants in 2015, and the Water Challenge to Hospitals in 2018.

For additional information how to make your home, hotel or restaurant more water efficient, visit Water Saving Tips. If you would like to learn about other citywide water conservation initiatives, please visit Conservation Programs.