Office of the Vice President for Global Communications

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Record Update First

University adopts new energy standards

The University has established a goal to meet or exceed rigorous new industry standards for energy performance in its buildings, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Timothy Slottow said during the Feb. 19 Board of Regents meeting.

“Energy performance is extremely important to our campus,” he said. “This new industry standard is roughly 10-20 percent better than the previous guidelines. But U-M has established a goal to achieve a 30 percent better aggregate energy performance than the previous standard in most buildings.”

Standards for energy performance are established by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). Slottow said the University has adopted the updated ASHRAE standards for all new buildings and those that undergo infrastructure renovations. He added that U-M routinely exceeds the minimum energy efficiencies.

Slottow said North Quad and the Law School are two new buildings that will achieve, or come very close to achieving the 30 percent goal.

Steps taken to achieve this goal include those things that might come readily to mind such as installing the most energy efficient equipment and building materials. But it also includes such considerations as maximizing shade, paying attention to the direction of glass in the design, and optimizing occupancy schedules for a building.

In addition, Slottow said that the University will explore the possibility of establishing a central office for managing sustainability on campus projects.