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Doing Well by Doing Good Recipe for an Effective Campus Energy Program. Walter Simpson, CEM, LEED AP Former University Energy Officer, University at Buffalo AASHE Senior Fellow Author, Cool Campus! A How-To Guide for College and University Climate Action Planning

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Doing Well by Doing GoodRecipe for an Effective Campus Energy Program

Walter Simpson, CEM, LEED AP

Former University Energy Officer, University at Buffalo

AASHE Senior Fellow

Author, Cool Campus! A How-To Guide for College and University Climate Action Planning

Editor and Co-Author, The Green Campus: Meeting the Challenge of Environmental Sustainability


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Take Home Message

  • Campus energy conservation has the power…


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Take Home Message

  • Campus energy conservation has the power…

    • To save money


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Take Home Message

  • Campus energy conservation has the power…

    • To save money

    • To pay for itself


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Take Home Message

  • Campus energy conservation has the power…

    • To save money

    • To pay for itself

    • To protect the environment


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Take Home Message

  • Campus energy conservation has the power…

    • To save money

    • To pay for itself

    • To protect the environment

    • To educate for sustainability


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Recipe for Success

  • What are the right ingredients?

  • How can we build a successful program?


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Ingredients for a Successful Campus Energy Conservation Program

  • Obtain top level support

  • Prioritize facilities

  • Provide program staffing and leadership

  • Create energy awareness

  • Develop strong energy policies

  • Nurture creative staff


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More Ingredients . . . Program

  • Find and focus on the best opportunities

  • Utilize creative financing strategies

  • Involve students

  • Focus on climate change

  • Avoid new construction or only build the most energy efficient new buildings

  • Document savings


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Ingredient Program

Obtain Top Level Support


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Models of Campus Energy and Environmental Leadership Program

  • Top down

  • Bottom up

  • Mixture

Presidents leading the American

College & University

Presidents Climate Commitment


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Why Top Level Support? Program

  • Allows program to achieve full potential

  • With top level support:

    • Facilities staff know they have support

    • All units and departments cooperate

    • The campus community is encouraged to participate


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Campus Leadership Can Demonstrate Support by… Program

  • Providing human and financial resources

  • Giving visible support for campus energy policies

  • Insisting that other top administrative officers support the conservation effort

  • Backing facilities as it “pushes the envelope”

  • Setting a personal example


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Ingredient Program

Prioritize Facilities


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Why Facilities? Program

Facilities managers and staff:

  • Run campus energy systems

  • Know what needs to be done

  • Can do the most

  • Must be on board or no one else will be


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How Facilities Can Help Program

  • Facilities energy committee

  • Commitment by facilities director

  • Include conservation commitment in:

    • Strategic planning

    • Mission & vision statement

    • Staff evaluations

  • Green campus office within facilities


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University at Buffalo Facilities ProgramMission & Vision Statement

  • “We are committed to environmental excellence in all facets of our management and operations and to providing statewide and national green

    campus leadership.”


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U Buffalo Staff Evaluations Program

  • All staff must “demonstrate a commitment to energy conservation and environmental stewardship and, whenever possible, promote these values to coworkers and to the wider campus community.”


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Ingredient Program

  • Provide program staffing and leadership


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Creating an Energy Officer Position Program

  • Full or part-time focus exclusively on campus energy conservation

  • Not a sustainability coordinator

  • Skill set:

    • Technical competence

    • Communication – public speaking, writing

    • Program development

    • Community organizing

  • Reports to chief facilities officer


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Ingredient Program

Create Energy Awareness


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Energy Awareness Program Tips Program

  • Change campus culture

  • Be realistic

  • Active vs. passive

  • Different strokes for different folks

  • Seize moral high ground

  • Temperature control is critical

  • Develop a multi-faceted campaign


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Getting Attention ProgramBeing cute, being provocative

You have the power…

to save energy



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Ingredient Program

Develop Strong Energy Policies


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Energy Policies Program

  • Energy policies …

    • Formalize goals

    • Give authority

    • Help hold the line

  • Need academic buy-in

  • Timing is critical

  • Don’t forget to implement!


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Types of Energy Policies Program

  • Heating and cooling temps

  • Fan run times

  • Reheats

  • New construction

  • Energy purchasing

  • Space heaters

  • Dorm refrigerators


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Governor’s Executive Orders Program

  • George Pataki – E.O. 111 (2001)

    • Reduce energy consumption in buildings

    • Build more efficient new green buildings

    • Buy green power

  • David Paterson – E.O. 4 (2008)

    • Green purchasing

    • Create sustainability programs

    • Greenhouse gas emissions reduction

    • 100% post consumer content recycled paper


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Ingredient Program

Nurture Creative Staff


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Making the Most of Your Staff Program

  • Identify staff who:

    • Think outside the box

    • Want to act

    • Know how

  • Empower them!

    • Give permission

    • Encourage

    • Provide resources

    • Recognize and thank


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Story of Herb Lydell Program

  • Sees energy waste everywhere

  • Very knowledgeable, creative, and unorthodox

  • “Invents” heat recovery system that uses building chilled water coils and the campus chilled water loop to transfer heat from building to building


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The Incredible Results Program

  • Free heat for campus buildings

  • $80,000/yr savings

  • Total savings: over $1 million to date!

  • Zero cost to implement


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Ingredient Program

Find and Focus on the Best Opportunities


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Finding Savings Opportunities Program

  • Facilities staff know where they are

  • Conduct a systematic campus energy conservation audit

  • Target your energy pigs!


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U Buffalo’s Energy Pigs Program

  • Buildings with:

    • Constant volume terminal

      reheat fan systems

    • Electric heating

    • Laboratory ventilation systems

No offense to pigs intended


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Cooke-Hochstetter Program

  • 230 fume hoods

  • 300,000 cfm

  • Electric heat

  • Summer humidity control

  • $2 million/yr in energy costs

  • Solutions

    • Fume hood decommissioning

    • Heat recovery (heat wheels, run-around loops, heat pumps, Lydell Cycle)

    • Gas conversion

    • Run cool in summer to minimize reheat

At least we didn’t build 20 of them!


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Ingredient Program

Utilize Creative Financing Strategies


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Creative Funding Possibilities Program

  • Utility or state incentives

  • Revolving funds

  • Energy performance contracts with energy service companies (ESCOs)

  • Alumni donations

  • Foundations


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Performance Contracting Program

  • UB performance contracting experience:

    • 1994-1997 -- $17 million project

    • 2003-2007 -- $11 million project

    • 2007 - 2009 -- $10 million project


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Ingredient Program

Involve Students


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Why Involve Students? Program

  • To get their help

  • To enhance their educational experience

  • To catch their fire!


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Reaching Students Program

  • Classroom lectures

  • Campus-wide events

  • Student assistants

  • Activist campaigns

  • Internships and research projects


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Student Projects Programcampus as learning lab

  • Environmental audits

  • Campus dumpster dives

  • Vending machine study

  • Passive cooling project

  • Biomass cogeneration

  • Solar hot water


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Ingredient Program

Focus on Climate Change


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Climate Change Basics Program

  • Global warming is real and it's happening

  • It’s caused by human activity

  • The consequences are serious

  • It is not too late to do something about it…


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Campus climate action steps Program

  • Conduct GHG emissions inventory

  • Make commitment to reduce emissions

  • Develop campus climate action plan

  • Implement plan and achieve reductions

  • Educate about

    climate change


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UB’s GHG inventory Program

  • 142,900 MTe/yr

    • 53% purchased

      electricity

    • 25% commuting

      and fleet vehicles

    • 20% purchased natural gas

It’s about energy and transportation!


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Interesting Findings Program

  • Overall emissions = 25,000 cars, trucks, SUVs, etc.

  • Commuting = 79,000,000 miles

    • Equal to 3,000 times around the

      earth at the equator


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American College & University President’s Climate Commitment

  • Achieve climate neutrality at earliest possible date

  • Incorporate climate change and sustainability in curriculum and research

  • 670 signatories

  • Co-organized by AASHE, ecoAmerica, and Second Nature


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Defining climate neutrality Commitment

  • Climate neutrality is defined as having no net greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions

  • To be achieved by:

    • Minimizing GHG emissions as much as possible

    • Using carbon offsets to mitigate the remaining emissions.


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How to do it? Commitment

  • Job #1 is energy conservation

  • Then renewables

  • Followed by

    offsets (after offset

    market matures)

Shrink it!


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Ingredient Commitment

Avoid New Construction or Only Build the Most Energy Efficient New Buildings


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Hidden Cost of New Construction Commitment

  • Even a very energy efficient new building will add to your energy costs and carbon footprint

  • Avoid or minimize new construction by

    • More efficient space utilization

    • Adaptive reuse of existing buildings


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Green Design For Maximum CommitmentEnergy Efficiency

  • Avoid LEED check-list approach

  • Aim for LEED Gold and Platinum only

  • Maximize LEED energy points

  • Fear “value” engineering

  • Anticipate and address inevitable building budget crisis


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Getting Really Green! Commitment

Oberlin College Environmental Studies Center


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Ingredient Commitment

Document Savings


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Why Document Commitment?

  • You might surprise yourself!

  • Boost Facilities morale

  • Great public relations

  • Can create administrative support


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What’s Possible? Commitment

  • University at Buffalo experience

    • Program began in the late 1970s

    • Sustained for 30 years

    • Annual savings now $10 million

    • Cumulative savings $100+ million


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Take Home Message Commitment

  • Campus energy conservation has the power…

    • To save money

    • To pay for itself

    • To protect the environment

    • To educate for sustainability


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Thank You! Commitment

Walter Simpson

[email protected]


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