CU Denver building meets EPA standards
he university’s Facilities team has partnered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to certify the Lawrence Street Center as an ‘Energy Star Building.’
Built in 1982, the 14-story tower at 1380 Lawrence Street includes central administrative offices for the Chancellor, Provost, Human Resources, and is home to the School of Public Affairs and School of Education and Human Development.
Energy Star-certified buildings meet strict energy performance standards set by the EPA. They use less energy, are less expensive to operate, and cause fewer greenhouse gas emissions than other buildings.
“If you’ve ever noticed a blue-colored sticker with the Energy Star logo on home appliances, electronics, light bulbs and other products, the building ratings are part of the same overall system,” said Jarrett N. Smith, MPA, LEED® green associate, sustainability officer. “It means the user can expect to save energy and money without any sacrifices in performance. But similar to your refrigerator, commercial buildings can earn EPA’s Energy Star and get the same sticker – slightly larger.
“We performed a Technical Energy Audit on the building last year and it helped us recognize the needs. This is the first building that we have received this recognition for. This is good news for the university as it means we are operating buildings in very efficient ways, saving us money and helping us meet our goals for energy reduction.”
Through the Energy Star Portfolio Manager, EPA’s online tool for measuring and tracking energy and water use, Pete Bloomquist, the university energy engineer, was able to use a number of different metrics to get insights into how the Lawrence Street Center is performing.
Through the certification process, buildings receive a 1–100 Energy Star score, which compares a property’s energy performance to similar properties nationwide.
The Lawrence Street Center received an 85, a very good score, especially given the age of the building. This score was partly a result of energy conservation measures completed over the last year that included the addition of occupancy sensors and lighting upgrades in portions of the building, as well as an updated Seimens building automation system that allows for more efficiency in the heating and cooling.
The Energy Star certification is part of the university’s Facilities Management program to reduce natural resource use and reduce greenhouse gas emissions — all while providing superior places in which to learn and to work. For more see: http://www.ucdenver.edu/about/Initiatives/Sustainability/Pages/UCDSustainabilityInitiative.aspx.