Columbia U Pledges Fossil Free Buildings

The university announced recently that it will no longer install new fossil fuel connections in any new construction, refresh or renovation projects. To support this transition, the university will evaluate how to fully electrify the campus by replacing the onsite combustion of fossil fuels with clean, renewable energy sources.

Seven HEIs Receive 2021 USGBC Leadership Award

The USGBC Leadership Awards recognize the exemplary leadership of individuals and organizations contributing to the creation of sustainable, healthier, equitable and resilient buildings, cities and communities. Higher education institutions that were recognized include Harvard University; Stevens Institute of Technology; University of California, Merced; University Hospitals of Cleveland Rainbow Center for Women and Children; University of Monterrey; University of St. Thomas; and Washington University in St. Louis.

Georgia Tech Building Earns Living Building Certification

Georgia Tech's Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design has measured net-positive for energy and water. Over the performance period, the building generated 225 percent of the energy needed to power all of its electrical systems from solar panels on its roof. It also collected, treated and infiltrated 15 times the amount of water needed for building functions.

U Virginia Uses HVAC Systems to Cull Spread of COVID

A group of specialists at the university recently began studying how best to use heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems to limit the spread of COVID-19 virus. They are focused on three areas: HVAC enhancements, such as the use of filters and increased ventilation; mitigating airborne transmission based on new research and technologies; and serving as a resource to the campus community about airborne transmission and HVAC mitigation.

U Oklahoma Building Earns LEED Gold

Gallogly Hall features energy-efficient HVAC systems, recycled and locally available materials, roof and hardscape materials that mitigate the heat island effect, and a storm water and condensate recovery system for reuse in the building purified water system. The landfill diversion rate of the on-site construction waste was 80 percent.

MIT Building Earns LEED Platinum

The MIT.nano building, a research facility for nanoscience and nanotechnology, features extensive indoor environmental controls and monitoring systems, open space, use of low-emitting materials, and design efforts to increase natural light throughout the building.

Syracuse U Installs Solar-Electric on Student Center

A recent renovation of the university's Schine Student Center included installation of a 50-kilowatt, roof-mounted photovoltaic system.

Miami U Names Building After First Black Graduate

Miami’s board of trustees announced in late September the renaming of the Campus Avenue Building to Nellie Craig Hall. The granddaughter of a Civil War veteran, Nellie Craig graduated from Miami University in 1905. She earned her two-year teaching certificate and was the first Black educator to student teach in the Oxford Public School system to a mixed-race classroom.

Five Washington U St. Louis Buildings Earn LEED Platinum

Four buildings–Sumers Welcome Center, Weil Hall, Schnuck Pavilion and Jubel Hall–were certified as part of the East End Transformation, of which highlights include buildings that are designed to be 30 percent more efficient than standard buildings; heat recovery chillers that harvest waste heat for heating needs; a living green wall in Weil Hall; furniture that is compliant with the Healthier Hospitals Initiative; and a green roof over the underground garage. A fifth building–January Hall–originally built in 1922, features improvements to its building envelope and an energy-efficient mechanical system. More than 60 percent of the historic furniture and wall paneling in the hall's East Asian Library was preserved and reused, substantially minimizing the embodied carbon of the project.

Northwestern U Research Center Earns LEED Gold

The university's Biomedical Research Center features a vegetated roof, a rainwater collection system, a double-skin facade on the south-facing side to reduce heat and glare, energy recovery wheels in laboratory exhaust and water-efficient fixtures.

Lane CC Building Earns LEED Silver

The community college's Center for Learning and Student Success building was recently renovated to include energy-efficient HVAC and lighting systems, automatic lighting systems, high-efficiency plumbing fixtures, reflective material to reduce heat island effect, low-emission finishes and construction materials, and raised planter beds for fruits and herbs to be grown in accordance with the college's integrated pest management plan.

Ball State U Building Obtains LEED Gold

The university's new Health Professions building includes green roofs, photovoltaic solar panels, an underground stormwater retention system, low-flow water fixtures, energy-efficient LED lighting, a design that enhances daylight to reduce energy consumption, and ground-source heating and cooling.

CaGBC Announces 2020 Building Award Winners

The Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) recently announced the winners of the 2020 Leadership and Green Building Excellence Awards. The awards recognize individuals and organizations that demonstrate outstanding industry leadership and have made significant contributions to CaGBC’s mission to advance green building in Canada. The University of Calgary won the Green Building Excellence Zero Carbon Award. The Humber College Building Nx won in the Green Building Excellence Existing Building category. The Inspired Educator award went to Mohawk College. Colin Pinchin, a fourth-year student at the British Columbia Institute of Technology, won the Students Leading Sustainability: Andy Kesteloo Memorial Project Award.

Loyola U Spain Campus Receives LEED Platinum

(Spain) Loyola University campus in Seville, Spain, features facades and windows that were designed to minimize sizable energy losses, photovoltaic panels and a water recovery system. More than 20 percent of the building materials were reused materials, and more than 30 percent of the materials were locally extracted.

Cleveland State U Achieves LEED Gold

The university's College of Engineering building, Washkewicz Hall, features low-flow toilets and faucets, energy-efficient mechanical systems, light-colored roof material to reflect heat and maintain a cooler temperature within the building, and paints, flooring and wall materials containing no- or low-volatile organic compounds.

San Diego State U Building Earns LEED Gold

The university’s newest residential community building, Huaxyacac Hall, includes advanced energy and water metering to optimize energy efficiency and support water management, low-flow toilets, showers and faucets to promote water conservation, and trickle vents in resident rooms to improve indoor air quality and reduce energy consumption. Additional sustainable elements include an expansive outdoor space with water-efficient landscaping, covered bicycle storage and water bottle refill stations.

Environment America Releases Higher Ed Renewable Energy Report

Environment America's newly released report, "America’s Top Colleges for Renewable Energy 2020: Who Is Leading the Transition to 100% Renewable Energy on Campus?", catalogs the efforts of 127 colleges and universities that reported data through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Green Power Partnership. The report lists the top 10 colleges and universities obtaining 100 percent or more of their electricity from renewable sources, with Georgetown University leading all schools, generating and purchasing more than 1.3 times as much electricity from renewable sources as it consumes. It also lists the top five schools for renewable heating, cooling, hot water and other non-electric energy produced per student, with Colby College listed first.

Ohio U Installs Planted Roof

The Schoonover Center for Communication now harbors a partially vegetated roof, which will serve as a home to research projects, replete with equipment to track temperature, ultraviolet radiation, air quality, biodiversity, water runoff and water quality. The initiative was funded through a series of grants that engaged faculty from numerous departments interested in research data from the project.

U Kentucky Park Earns LEED Certification

Kentucky Proud Park, the home of University of Kentucky baseball, achieved LEED certification for reducing potable water use by 30 percent, diverting 76 percent of on-site generated construction waste from landfills, implementing energy saving measures and using recycled materials in building materials.

Arizona State U Building Earns 'Excellence in Sustainability Award'

The university's Biodesign Institute C, a new, multi-functional research facility designed specifically to promote and enable the creation of cutting-edge research clusters, won Lab Manager’s Excellence in Sustainability prize, given as part of the Lab Design Excellence Awards. The Aerospace and Engineering Sciences Building at the Metropolitan State University of Denver received honorable mention for sustainability.

Bucknell U Building Achieves LEED Platinum O+M

The university's academic and office building, Academic West, includes room occupancy sensors, large windows and glass interior walls that allow natural light to permeate the building, a green roof that helps the building stay cool and serves as a laboratory for student and faculty research, rain gardens, and a smart metering system that logs data on energy, temperature, water flow and HVAC settings every five minutes.

South Dakota State U Building Receives LEED Gold

The recent Harding Hall renovation included reusing 75 percent of the existing materials in the building, the use of low-emitting materials and enhanced HVAC air filtration.

Lafayette College Building Receives LEED Platinum

The college's Rockwell Integrated Sciences Center features renewable energy that meets 70 percent of the building's electricity needs, a reflective roof, ample daylighting, and bird-safe window glazing.

Appalachian State U Building Earns LEED Silver

The university's new Hall of Health Sciences includes rooftop solar panels, water-efficient fixtures and landscaping, pollution-reducing lighting, and access to public transportation.

Washington U St. Louis Helps City Adopt Building Standards

Staff from the WashU Office of Sustainability worked closely with the City of St. Louis since the fall of 2019 to develop a strategy for ambitious and achievable building energy performance standards, which were adopted in April and signed into law in May. The Building Energy Performance Standards set energy-efficiency targets for all new and existing buildings in St. Louis, while working towards a goal of reducing emissions 100 percent below 2005 levels by 2050, and improving indoor and outdoor air quality by reducing dependency on fossil fuels.