Sustainability at Chico State

Campus Vegetation and Arboretum Committee

Formalized by EM 18-010(opens in new window), the Campus Vegetation and Arboretum Committee (CVAC) was established to help create and review policies that seek to maintain and enhance the educational and aesthetic value of the CSU, Chico Arboretum and associated vegetation. The CVAC facilitates long-term planning to maximize the use and future of the campus vegetation and arboretum as a historical, aesthetic, ecological, and educational resource.

The committee is dedicated to:

  • Preservation of historic trees and planning for future plantings
  • Enhancement of the natural beauty and character of the campus
  • Enhancement of vegetative structure to maximize ecosystem services and functions such as air quality, soil stabilization, carbon sequestration, microhabitat modifications, wildlife habitat, and campus biodiversity
  • Providing an extended classroom and living laboratory that serves the educational mission of the University.
Campus Photo Albums

Big Chico Creek and treesThe Chico State arboretum and vegetation are an absolutely incredible experience. Wandering through campus, enjoying the creek, wildlife, and vegetation are a favorite past-time for many members of our campus and the larger community.

If you are unable to explore the campus in person or would just like to admire beautiful photography, the Chico State campus photographers have curated several stunning albums showcasing the lovely Chico seasons. 

Check out the albums here. (opens in new window)

Chico State is a Tree Campus USA

logo for tree campus usaChico State is proud to have earned Tree Campus USA(opens in new window) recognition!  To obtain this distinction, we met the five core standards for sustainable campus forestry required by Tree Campus USA, including establishment of a tree advisory committee, evidence of a campus tree-care plan, dedicated annual expenditures for its campus tree program, an Arbor Day observance and the sponsorship of student service-learning projects. 

If ever there was a time for trees, now is that time. Communities worldwide are facing issues with air quality, water resources, personal health and well-being, and energy use. As a result of our commitment to effective urban forest management, we are helping to provide a solution to these global challenges.

Pollinator and Habitat Certification

squirrel snacking on the Chico State campus Over the 2021 summer, Chico State was lucky to be able to host several California Climate Action Corps Fellows.  One fellow, Faith Churchill, was given the task of researching the various pollinator and habitat certifications and making recommendations to the campus on which certifications should be pursued.  Based on Faith's recommendations, Chico State will be seeking multiple certifications for the variety of habitats and landscapes Chico State showcases.  Stay tuned for more information on the certifications as they are achieved!

Pollinator and Habitat Certification Option Presentation   (PDF)

Approved Campus Planting List

In consultation with many campus stakeholders, the CVAC has approved a list of plants allowed in new plantings on the Chico State campus.  This list should be referenced whenever a new planting is scheduled either as part of routine maintenance or part of larger renovation or construction project.  Any questions about the list should be directed to the chair of the CVAC, Mike Alonzo (

Approved plant list (PDF)

CVAC Membership

CVAC Membership
RoleNameTerm Expiration
Faculty - Dept. of Biology Sciences (specialty in Plant Diversity)Kristina Schierenbeck2021
Faculty - College of BSSDon Hankins2021
Faculty - College of AGRGarrett Liles2021
Faculty - College of CMEGary Day2022
Faculty - Dept. Geological & Environmental Studies (specialty in applied ecology)Kristen Kaczynski2021
Faculty (experience in Botany or related field)Adrienne Edwards2021
Emeritus Faculty - Dept. of Biological SciencesWes Dempsey
Supervisor of Grounds and LandscapeMike Alonzo (CHAIR)--
Staff memberPeter Hansen2021
AS Sustainability Committee RepresentativeVacant
Campus ArchitectMike Guzzi--
AS Member (interest in botany or related field)Vacant
Student RepresentativeFaith Churchill
Chico Community Member (interest in botany or related field)Richie Bamlet