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Optional Environmental Impact Fee helps green ASU air travel

A plane flying with contrails.
October 25, 2011

Arizona State University-sponsored air travelers now can contribute to an optional Environmental Impact Fee (EIF) that will fund campus greenhouse gas emissions-reduction projects that work toward the university’s 2025 carbon neutrality goal.

What type of programs will the EIF funds support?

The establishment of a videoconferencing infrastructure is an example of how EIF funds could be used to eliminate work-related travel.

What types of trips can an EIF be added to?

ASU-sponsored flights for business-related travel for ASU employees to professional conferences, meetings and research-related trips, to name a few.

What departments developed the EIF?

The EIF is a collaborative project between University Sustainability Practices and Financial Services, which provides fiscal advice and long-term assessment.

Why is the optional EIF available to ASU-sponsored travelers?

The EIF program is an initiative of President Crow’s American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC).

What is the fee range? 

EIF round-trip flight rates currently average $20 for domestic round trip flights and $15–$100 for international cities. View a map of EIF zones.

How can I add an EIF on my travel claim for airfare?

Mark a box on the MyASU travel application or paper travel claim. A trip manager and/or an Authorized Travel Official need to authorize the EIF during the travel-claim review.

What departmental account are EIFs processed from? 

The EIF will be assessed to the first account listed on the travel claim. Sponsored accounts cannot be assessed the EIF. However, an alternate account can be designated in the space provided on the MyASU travel application and paper travel-claim form.

Who assesses the EIF?

The EIF is assessed by ASU Financial Services after the ASU Travel department has processed the travel claim.

What sources were used to determine EIF calculations?

The University Sustainability Practices team conducted substantial research on online air travel carbon footprint calculators including CarbonFund and TerraPass. The International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) was used to determine the distance between destinations.

Why is the EIF only available for ASU air travel?

Air-travel emissions, even on a per-passenger basis, substantially surpass other forms of ASU transportation. In the interest of environmental responsibility and the American College and University Presidents Climate Commitment (ACUPCC), air travel was deemed the most measurable emissions assessment.

What oversights are in place to manage EIF income?

The funds generated by the fee are subject to disbursement by a committee that administers the use of savings from energy-reduction projects and programs. That committee is comprised of university experts in sustainability, finance and facilities. 

Is there more information online that demonstrates how EIF funds will be used?

During the project’s second phase, as EIF funds accumulate, a dashboard section on the EIF website will display a continuously updated feed of a variety of metrics, including: a description and offset calculation of each project funded and the amount awarded to it and total fund revenue and disbursement for the current fiscal year.

Who do I contact for additional EIF information?

For general questions about the EIF, please contact For question about the EIF assessment, please contact Financial Services at