UAM: RioPlus Business Sustainability Statement

The Metropolitan Autonomous University (UAM) is one of the most important public universities in the country.

From its foundation in 1974 it has grown and consolidated with a strong physical presence with 5 campi located in strategic points of the Mexico Megacity.

The unique combination of high academic standards together with a strong social consciousness and commitment to connect and serve the communities that hosts us, has made UAM a university that contributes to sustainable development.

Our community comprises more than 50 thousand undergraduate students, about 2685 graduate students and a faculty and research team or more than 2800 full time academics.

Sharing the spirit of Rio + 20 and the new paradigm of Green Growth, our university continues to promote more and more interdisciplinary research in which the environment, social and economic dimensions are given an equal footing.

In terms of our educational offering, UAM was the first university in the country to launch an Environmental Engineering degree program in our Azcapotzalco campus already 35 years ago, together with a swift of other options ranging from hydrobiology to zoology and biology with special focus on ecology, among others.

At UAM we believe that we most teach by example. Our campi continue to advance in lowering their environmental and carbon footprint by installing efficient lighting, rain water capture, treatment and injection to the aquifers, waterless urinals, sustainable waste management including composting and recycling, photovoltaic panels, solar water heaters, etc.

In order to promote a broad debate on the state of our country, our natural resources including our biodiversity, the challenge of reaching and maintaining our food security, achieving electricity access for all, and the imperative to build a socially fair, economically prosperous and environmentally sustainable society we are constantly updating our academic offering and increasing the number of interdisciplinary research projects.

Some of the most emblematic projects from across all our campi that clearly capture the spirit of Rio +20 are:

• The Sierra Nevada Program, to promote the sustainable management of the forest, water, soil and wastes involving local communities and creating a source of modest but reliable income for the poor (Iztapalapa).
• The Iztapalapa quality of life and welfare project, in one of the most densely populated communities of the entire metropolitan area of Mexico City (Iztapalapa).
• Sustainable management of the most visited natural protected areas in Mexico, which combines biodiversity conservation with sustainable management of resources and a strong educational component on site (Iztapalapa).
• An urban landscaping project including microalgae for recreation, jobs creation and greenhouse gases mitigation (Cuajimalpa).
• Social, technological and climate mitigation co-benefits of a lignocelullosic biomass development project (Cuajimalpa).
• Climate change awareness and education through a multimedia digital tool with the participation of Mexico´s more prominent climate scientists.
• A brand new degree program on Sustainability is now being offered at one of our new campi (Lerma), which addresses the economic and social aspects of sustainability on the top of a strong environmental foundation.

Dr. Enrique Fernández Fassnacht
General Rector

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