Better management of building energy usage to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
Students and staff drive important efforts to improve energy efficiency, raise awareness, and integrate mindful energy consumption across the University. These efforts, most notably the campus-wide Energy Challenge, reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) for the entire campus. Although behavior change and engagement that leads to reduced energy demand is important, it is only one part of a larger effort to reduce costs and emissions.
IU is also working aggressively to improve efficiency through infrastructure investments. More efficient buildings reduce energy costs and GHG emissions, while also protecting the University from projected future increases in energy prices. One of the most impactful ways that IU is improving efficiency is through state appropriations for repair and rehabilitation (R&R) of existing buildings.
IU has prioritized energy efficiency when evaluating building vulnerabilities and R&R efforts. For instance, this past year, more than half of the total R&R spent (more than $21 million) for the Bloomington campus included energy efficiency upgrades or improvements. These projects included metering upgrades to ensure more accurate tracking of building performance, systematic lighting fixture upgrades to LED bulbs, window replacements, air handling unit replacements, building controls upgrades, replacement of outdated electric boiler systems and chilled water pumps, as well as building envelope repairs and maintenance. These and other investments are making an impact; IU recently reported, via STARS, that between FY 2010 and FY 2017 building energy use intensity per square foot has decreased by 17.6% for the campus.