CCAC Achieves National Better Buildings Challenge Energy Savings Goal
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recognized the Community College of Allegheny County (CCAC) for achieving its energy savings goal as a partner in the Better Buildings Challenge. CCAC has achieved energy savings of 22% due to greater efficiency efforts across its building portfolio.
CCAC is one of the market leaders partnering with DOE to set portfolio-wide energy savings goals and share their efficiency strategies on the Better Buildings Solution Center. To date, Better Buildings partners have saved $18.5 billion in energy costs, resulting in nearly 190 million metric tons of avoided carbon emissions.
"Our Better Buildings Goal Achievers are leaders in their industries-demonstrating that we can reach the nation's ambitious climate goals if we work together and commit to excellence," said DOE Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Jeff Marootian. "Congratulations to the 2023 achievers, who are accelerating innovative solutions to use less energy, reduce emissions, and save money for American families and businesses. We appreciate their dedication and hope more partners can join us as we build our clean energy future."
The Better Buildings Challenge is one component of the Better Buildings Initiative, through which DOE partners with more than 900 public and private sector organizations to make commercial, public, industrial, and residential buildings more efficient, thereby saving energy and money while creating jobs. Discover more than 3,000 proven efficiency solutions from these partners in the Better Buildings Solution Center.
CCAC's commitment to students has compelled the college to divert as much money as possible from energy costs to student services by ensuring that operations are environmentally responsible. To date, CCAC's annual utility costs have dropped from $3.5 million to just over $3 million, due to intentional energy-saving measures.
The college's commitment to energy conservation and saving is supported by the CCAC Board of Trustees, which approved the Collegewide Energy Policy in October 2015. The Facilities Management Department continues to research and update guidelines to support the energy policy, including equipment operations, system operations, process controls, and behavior-based components. In 2016, CCAC joined the Better Buildings Challenge and pledged to reduce our energy intensity portfolio-wide by 20% over 10 years.
Among the energy saving measures undertaken by CCAC as part of the Better Buildings Challenge, CCAC replaced old steam boilers and absorption chillers with hot water boilers and electric chillers at the South Campus; and replaced constant volume re-heat with a VAV system and fan wall (rather than a single fan) at the Allegheny Campus. The college collaborated with the IT Department to reduce computer energy consumption by having automatic activation of sleep mode on campus computers plus switching to laptops and virtualizing servers. CCAC also implemented a print management protocol that has eliminated ink and paper waste.