Community College of Allegheny County joins Energy Department’s Better Buildings Challenge; announces bold energy reduction goal

Article by: CCAC Public Relations

PITTSBURGH—The Community College of Allegheny County is pleased to announce a partnership with the U.S. Energy Department’s Better Buildings Challenge, a leadership initiative aiming to create energy efficiency solutions and accelerate investments by companies, organizations and local government. As a partner in the Better Buildings Challenge, CCAC has set an ambitious goal of improving the energy efficiency of its entire 1.5 million-square-foot building portfolio by 20 percent within 10 years.

CCAC joins a group of more than 310 Better Buildings Challenge partners who are leading the energy efficiency sector by deploying solutions and strategies to improve the efficiency of the nation’s buildings, plants and homes. By partnering with the Energy Department, CCAC will share successful strategies that maximize efficiency over the next decade. Since President Obama launched the Better Buildings Challenge in 2011, program partners, which manage 4.2 billion square feet, are sharing energy performance data on more than 34,000 properties and have saved $1.3 billion and 160 trillion BTUs of energy.

“Thanks to a dedicated drive to actively create and share the best energy efficiency solutions, Better Buildings partners have dramatically cut their energy waste and saved more than a billion dollars since the Better Buildings initiative was launched five years ago,” said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. “As the initiative continues to grow, we are moving the nation forward by reducing energy costs and carbon emissions through energy efficiency.”

Historically, CCAC has spent more than $3 million a year on utilities, which is the second largest expenditure in its operating budget. The college has completed a major retrofit project at its South Campus, which has resulted in more than $255,000 in energy cost savings from May 15, 2015 to March 30, 2016. The savings will continue to increase as the project is fully phased in.As the lighting and mechanical systems in other college facilities are replaced, they will also be upgraded to high efficiency systems. In addition, CCAC’s Facilities Management Department is researching and writing guidelines to support a new college-wide Energy Policy that will address equipment operations, system operations, process controls and behavior-based components.

“CCAC’s participation in the Better Buildings Challenge reaffirms the college’s commitment to being an innovative and responsible community partner,” said CCAC President Dr. Quintin Bullock. “By actively working to reduce energy consumption, we are demonstrating our resolve to be an environmentally conscientious institution and reduce our carbon footprint. Not only does this help the college save on energy costs, it enables CCAC to use its resources to fund areas critical to student success, namely, to enhance student programming and services.”

For more information on the Better Buildings Challenge, go to: To view the full list of partners and read about their results, showcase projects and innovative solutions being shared with others, see the 2016 Progress Report.


About the Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC)
CCAC annually educates nearly 30,000 credit students through more than 150 degree, certificate, diploma and transfer programs and offers thousands of students access to noncredit and workforce development courses. The learning-centered institution’s mission is to provide affordable access to quality education and offer a dynamic, diverse and supportive learning environment that prepares the region’s residents for academic, professional and personal success in our changing global society. CCAC’s quality programs enable students to transfer credits to approximately 500 colleges and universities and support regional workforce needs with accessible instruction available day, evening, weekend and online in Allegheny County and beyond. Visit to learn more.

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