Buildings

Introduction

Buildings are generally the largest user of energy and the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions on campuses. Buildings also use significant amounts of potable water. Institutions can design, build, and maintain buildings in ways that provide a safe and healthy indoor environment for inhabitants while simultaneously mitigating the building’s impact on the outdoor environment.

Featured Resources

764 resources

Cost Savings and Carbon Reduction through DERs -- GridMarket Facilitated Projects at LIU

  • GridMarket (NY)

GridMarket worked with Long Island University to identify and optimize their opportunities to reap financial, resiliency and environmental benefits through the strategic deployment of distributed energy resources.

GridMarket leveraged its ...


Factors Impeding the Integration of Sustainability Elements in Built Environment Academic Curricula

  • University of Uyo (Akwa Ibom State)

Development within the construction industry shows that higher education is critical in the sector’s skills improvement. However, research findings are also explicit about absent and shadow integration of core ...


First Net Zero Carbon Building certification for a retrofit in Canada: Humber College NX building

  • Humber College (ON)

Located in the center of Humber’s North Campus in Toronto, Building NX has transformed from one of the campus’ most inefficient buildings, to an industry-leading example of zero carbon ...


Enhancing Growth in Rooftop Gardens with CO2 from Human Respiration Inside Buildings

  • Boston University (MA)

Cities are essential areas for human society. They face many environmental challenges while providing opportunities for integrating human infrastructure with the surrounding environment. This study proposes a system whereby carbon ...


A Machine Learning Based Tool for the Assessment of Energy Consumption in K-12 Schools

  • Florida Institute of Technology (FL)

Energy costs are the second highest operational expense for K-12 schools in the United States. Improving energy efficiency and moving towards sustainable school buildings not only result in substantial cost ...


Converting Miami University’s Goggin Ice Center from Steam to Heating Hot Water & HP Chiller: Reduced Energy Use, Carbon Emissions and Utility Costs

  • Miami University (OH)

We recognize that this innovative large scale project is replicable only at other universities that have ice arenas. Ice arenas tend to be very energy intensive. We show that converting ...


ENERGY EFFICIENCY IN K-12 SCHOOLS: A CASE STUDY IN FLORIDA

  • Florida Institute of Technology (FL)

Buildings are one of the largest energy consumers in the United States. K-12 schools are responsible for nearly 8% of energy consumption by commercial buildings which is equivalent to 1 ...


Impacts of technology-guided occupant behavior on air-conditioning system control and building energy use

  • The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Occupant behavior is an important factor affecting building energy consumption. Many studies have been conducted recently to model occupant behavior and analyze its impact on building energy use. However, to ...


Understanding facility management decision making for energy efficiency efforts for buildings at a higher education institution

  • University of Washington, Seattle (WA)
  • Institut Teknologi Bandung (Jawa Barat)

Education buildings, as the third highest consumer of energy in the United States, provides significant opportunities to lower greenhouse gas emissions by increasing energy efficiency (EE). Higher education institutions (HEIs ...


Measuring Up: a Case For Redrawing the System Boundaries of Sustainability At the University of Kentucky

  • University of Kentucky (KY)

The primary goal of this paper is to examine the role that sustainability assessment and reporting plays in creating a sustainable campus for academic excellence. A prototype sustainability assessment and ...


Evaluating the performance of a decentralized graywater treatment system in a living building at Hampshire College, Amherst, MA, USA

  • Hampshire College (MA)

Decentralized graywater treatment systems are growing in popularity as the threat of water scarcity rises and wastewater's potential as a resource is recognized. In 2016, Hampshire College in Amherst ...


Sustainability Impacts of Installing Low-Flow Toilets in a University Residence Hall

  • University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (IL)
  • University of Wisconsin-Madison (WI)

This study evaluates the sustainability impact of replacing inefficient toilets with low-flow units in a residence hall at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. A graduate student initiated this project through the ...


Estimation of energy efficiency for educational buildings in Hong Kong

  • City University of Hong Kong
  • Dalian University of Foreign Languages (Liaoning)

In this paper, we estimate the energy efficiency of educational buildings with the case study of buildings in City University of Hong Kong by constructing an energy demand stochastic frontier ...


Benchmarking Energy Use at University of Almeria

  • Universidad de Almería (Almeria)
  • Universidad Internacional de La Rioja (UNIR) (la Rioja)

Several factors impact the energy use of university campus buildings. This study aims to benchmark the energy use in universities with Mediterranean climates. The University of Almeria campus was used ...


Sustainable construction in Turkish higher education context

  • Middle East Technical University

As the construction industry is one of the dominant contributors to the world’s total CO2 emissions and it has huge negative impacts on the environment, sustainable construction has become ...


On-site Energy Manager Program

  • SUNY Jefferson Community College (NY)
  • New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) (NY)

In February of 2019 Jefferson Community College began a one-year commitment to provide a one-half time FTE On-site Energy Manager position in partnership with NYSERDA under project code OsEM17-C, (PON ...


Pay As You Throw: Testing a New Waste Reduction Strategy at Yale University

  • Yale University (CT)

In the spring of 2019, Yale launched a Pay As You Throw (PAYT) pilot program, the first of its kind among American institutions of higher education. From inception to development ...

  • Posted April 17, 2020
  • Case Studies
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Solar Energy on Campus (Part II: Solar Purchasing Options and Communicating Renewable Energy Use)

  • Center for Resource Solutions | Green-e (CA)

This report examines the solar purchasing options available to higher education institutions, and the fundamental components of each deal that affect renewable energy certificate (REC) ownership, claims, and the environmental ...

  • Posted April 17, 2020
  • Publications
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The Impact of Biophilic Learning Spaces on Student Success

  • Morgan State University (MD)

The purpose of this study is to examine to what extent the design of the physical learning space, enhanced with biophilic design, contributes to student stress reduction and improved learning ...

  • Posted April 16, 2020
  • Publications
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Are Electric Buildings a Feasible Carbon Neutrality Strategy?

  • University of California, Office of the President (CA)
  • AASHE (PA)
  • Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (CA)

The path to campus carbon neutrality is becoming clearer: electrify everything and procure renewable electricity. Electrifying campus energy infrastructure is a complex undertaking that requires a significant financial investment. While ...

  • Posted March 18, 2020
  • Videos & Webinars
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Designing a Resilient Campus

  • APPA: Leadership in Educational Facilities (VA)

The term “resilience” has increasingly been heard in conferences, project proposals, design charrettes, or from emergency managers. This is an emerging hot topic for those who work within the built ...

  • Posted March 6, 2020
  • Publications
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The relationship between energy use and space use of higher educational buildings in subtropical Australia

  • Griffith University (Queensland)

With an aim to understand the impact of a variety of space usage on the building energy consumption in university campuses, this study selected 122 university buildings located in subtropical ...

  • Posted March 5, 2020
  • Publications
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Opportunities and Benefits of a University-Based Weatherization Assistance Program: The Case of Furman University's Community Conservation Corps

  • Furman University (SC)

Weatherization assistance programs have been in existence in the United States for decades, but they are commonly managed and implemented by local government organizations. Furman University, a small liberal arts ...

  • Posted March 4, 2020
  • Publications
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A review of empirical data of sustainability initiatives in university campus operations

  • University of Coimbra

Given the need to actively address the challenges of climate change, university leaders have a growing interest in reducing their campuses’ environmental impact. This article carries out a comprehensive literature ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2020
  • Publications
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TrojanSense, a participatory sensing framework for occupant-aware management of thermal comfort in campus buildings

  • University of Southern California (CA)

This paper describes the development of TrojanSense, a participatory sensing framework developed to collect, analyze and report user assessments of thermal preference at the campus scale with room-level spatial resolution ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2020
  • Publications
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Strategies for thermal comfort in university buildings - The case of the faculty of architecture at the Federal University of Bahia, Brazil

  • Universidade Federal da Bahia, Escola Politécnica (Bahia)

Buildings constructed according to bioclimatic architectural principles in amenable climates have often experienced posterior interventions that have closed ventilation openings for the installation of air conditioning units.

The present work ...

  • Posted Feb. 10, 2020
  • Publications
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Accelerating the Circular Economy Through Commercial Deconstruction and Reuse

  • Google, Inc (CA)
  • Ellen MacArthur Foundation

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation and Google team up to explore how a circular economy approach can address the systemic challenges of reuse, particularly in the built environment.

Deconstruction presents a ...


Environmental Design (BS)

  • University of Houston (TX)

The Bachelor of Science in environmental design follows many of the degree plans of architecture degrees with less of an emphasis on professional practice and more on an emphasis on ...

  • Posted Dec. 6, 2019
  • Academic Programs
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7th Workshop on Research for Sustainability: Investigating Mass Timber as Green Alternative

  • University of Arkansas (AR)

Wood is an age-old construction material, first used around ten centuries ago in the building of Neolithic long houses with crude joints that barely held up a roof. Today wood ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Improving Health in the Built Environment Through a Class-Based Approach to Chemicals of Concern

  • Harvard University (MA)
  • Center for Environmental Health

This panel introduces purchasers (and manufacturers) to the targeted chemical class-based approach to help provide clarity grounded in science about how to avoid the most common chemicals of concern in ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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From Zero Energy to Energy+: Community-University-Industry Partnerships for Sustainable Housing

  • Pennsylvania State University (PA)

From community design charrettes to international student design competitions, two housing research organizations at Penn State have collaborated with local affordable housing organizations and home builders to address long-term housing ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Achieving Resilient, Low Carbon Campuses via a Sustainable Economic Model

  • Pratt Institute (NY)

We are developing a Roadmap to achieve a resilient, low carbon campus as well as upgrade our infrastructure, and have been working to find private partners who can help us ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Building Envelope Energy Performance Ranking & Archetype Energy Models: A Case Study

  • Morrison Hershfield (ON)

The University of Victoria (UVic) is undergoing a capital planning process and commissioning a comprehensive building investigation to prioritize and plan envelope rehabilitation work across their portfolio, intending to incorporate ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Low Carbon Electrification

  • Thompson Rivers University (BC)
  • Creative Energy (BC)

As Institutions across North America continue to expand, they are struggling to meet greenhouse gas reduction targets due to the significant capital investments required for net zero construction. Many institutions ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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On the Cutting Edge: Great Results From New Approaches to Behavioral Change Cues

  • Stanford University (CA)
  • University of Washington, Seattle (WA)
  • Lucid (CA)
  • Kriegh Architecture Studios (WA)

The next frontier in energy efficiency is occupants and how they interact with the buildings. Once we have the prescriptive things like codes and building envelopes done, it's about ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Understanding Decision Making for Building Energy Efficiency at a Higher Education Institution

  • University of Washington, Seattle (WA)

The built environment provides significant opportunities to lower greenhouse gas emissions by increasing energy efficiency (EE). In the United States, campuses have been major beneficiaries of EE programs and services ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Campus Energy Master Planning: Innovations and Best Practices

  • Michigan State University (MI)
  • Stanford University (CA)
  • ICF International (VA)
  • United States Department of Energy (DC)

Hundreds of colleges and universities have publicly committed to carbon neutrality, with over 120 targets in the next 15 years. How are schools addressing often the largest source of emissions ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Using Technology to Achieve Sustainability

  • University of Mississippi (MS)

Numerous academic and residential buildings, thousands of people subsisting together, and various facilities to support the establishment, it won't be wrong to compare a college campus to a small ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
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Energy Performance Improvement: Energy Savings and Occupant Awareness Program at Texas A&M University

  • Texas A&M University (TX)

Utilities & Energy Services (UES) Division at Texas A&M University strives to bridge the gap between implementing energy conservation measures and its success through increasing occupant engagement and empowerment. UES ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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An In-House Energy Dashboard: Challenges and Achievements from Oregon State University

  • Oregon State University (OR)

Digital energy dashboards have proven to be a convenient tool for energy data management, analysis and reporting. Dashboard software can be leveraged to not only support campus operations, but also ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Energizing a Growing Urban Campus: Taking Data to Implement Energy Savings & Sustainability at UW Tacoma

  • University of Washington, Tacoma (WA)
  • McKinstry (WA)

How do you take conventional building system surveys, upgrades and sub-metering data to the next level: comprehensive energy savings and genuine campus sustainability? How can you empower meaningful sustainability stewardship ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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What Good Looks Like: Creating a Center for Climate Resilience using the Living Community Challenge

  • San Francisco State University (CA)

San Francisco State University is redefining what it means to be an environmentally and socially resilient research university. At its campus in Tiburon, CA, SF State is striving for Living ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Sustainable Architecture and Initiatives: Lessons from Integrating Sustainability on Campus

  • University of Houston (TX)
  • Kirksey Architecture (TX)

University campuses are living laboratories -- testing grounds for sustainability strategies that can translate to the larger communities within which the campuses reside. For communities of all sizes, integrated sustainability requires ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Maximizing Campus Sustainability through Student/Staff-Driven Energy Efficiency and Engagement

  • Colorado School of Mines (CO)
  • McKinstry (WA)

Learn about driving behavioral/engagement strategies to increase campus sustainability from two universities leveraging energy-saving programs to accomplish this. These campuses are utilizing social science-based behavioral principles to break down ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Wildlife and the Built Environment - JCCC Bird Collision Study Data, Mitigation, and Results

  • Johnson County Community College (KS)

Why do birds collide with windows? During the 2018 JCCC Bird Collision study we learned many of our buildings and elevated walkways have various issues that create hazards for birds ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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What's the New Deal with Building 'Green' on Campus?

  • Michigan State University (MI)
  • Catalyst Partners (MI)

Many schools are leaning away from LEED and perhaps for good reason. Why? What are the challenges and are there alternatives to better suit campus strategies around green building. As ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Introducing Fitwel: Practical Applications & Learning Opportunities to Advance Campus Wellness

  • University of Alberta (AB)
  • Stantec Consulting, Ltd. (WA)

This session introduces Fitwel, a third-party health-focused rating system which utilizes evidence-based design approaches to promote positive health impacts across the built environment. Fitwel emerged at the same time as ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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How Sustainable & Integrated Design Supports the Vital Mission of the Knight Cancer Institute

  • Oregon Health & Science University (OR)
  • SRG Partnership, Inc (WA)
  • Brightworks Sustainability (OR)

Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU) is one of the only universities in the U.S. devoted exclusively to educating medical and public health professionals. The ambitious mission of their ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Reducing Energy Costs and Improving Sustainability while Improving Indoor Air Quality

  • Dynamic Air Quality Solutions (AR)

The lowest hanging fruit for energy-saving initiatives has been lighting. Today, designers are looking for other places to find savings. Air filtration and IAQ offer huge opportunities for energy efficiency ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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Design and Operational Consideration for Sustainable Maker Environments

  • Bohlin Cywinski Jackson (PA)

With the recent surge of interest surrounding the Maker Movement, many universities have allocated resources to developing their own maker spaces. The benefits of a maker education are vast, providing ...

  • Posted Dec. 4, 2019
  • Conference Presentations
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This tab provides access to data collected through AASHE’s Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS). STARS is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance. STARS enables meaningful comparisons over time and across institutions using a common set of measurements developed with broad participation from the campus sustainability community. Additional content and advanced benchmarking tools will be added to this tab over time.

Programs and Initiatives

The following links connect to specific Content Displays on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Scores

The following link connects to the Score Display on the STARS website (AASHE membership and log-in required).

Buildings Partners

Legrand North America, LLC

Carlsbad, CA
Business Leader
Legrand Building Control Systems provides digital lighting controls, shading and remote services.

7 Rivers Recycling

Onalaska, WI
Business Affiliate
7 Rivers Recycling (7RR) is a triple-bottom-line business that recycles mattresses through manual deconstruction.

Brightworks Sustainability

Portland, OR
Business Affiliate

Center for Resource Solutions | Green-e

San Francisco, CA
Business Affiliate
Green-e® is the only certification for renewable energy and carbon offsets accepted by AASHE STARS, setting quality standards and ensuring purchasers receive full environmental benefits.

Ecomedes

San Francisco, CA
Business Affiliate
Save money, watts and water for your buildings with the world's largest sustainable product catalog!

FXCollaborative

New York, NY
Business Affiliate

GreenerU

Watertown, MA
Business Affiliate

GridMarket

New York, NY
Business Affiliate
GridMarket is an energy consumer advocate and Distributed Energy Resources project facilitation platform.

Max-R

Sussex, WI
Business Affiliate
Max-R is the innovator of the customized waste and recycling bin.

Miller Hull Partnership

Seattle, WA
Business Affiliate

The University Financing Foundation, Inc.

Marietta, GA
Business Affiliate