UBC’s investment in energy management truly addresses the triple bottom line. Through several self-funding projects over the past decade, the University has reduced its energy and water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, enhanced the campus working environment for its community, and achieved significant financial and operational savings.
Central to UBC’s energy management activities is a strong partnership with BC Hydro that began in 2003. UBC and BC Hydro are both committed to strategic energy conservation. UBC benefits from BC Hydro’s energy conservation incentive programs and funding to develop teaching, research and student engagement initiatives.
As one of the 10 largest consumers of electrical energy in BC, the University has a significant impact on energy consumption in the province—and a unique opportunity to encourage other organizations to learn from our energy management practices.
Since the Campus Sustainability Office was formed in 1998, UBC has achieved significant success in energy management:
These reductions and savings were achieved during a period when UBC increased its core academic floor space by 14 per cent and its student numbers by 29 per cent.
UBC is developing a new Energy Management Plan to ensure accountability, maintain energy savings and identify further conservation opportunities.
Key plan components include:
1. Monitoring steam, electricity and water usage of individual large buildings
2. Benchmarking and data analysis
3. Identifying overconsumption and establishing conservation targets
4. Reporting results to the appropriate parties and periodically reviewing the management process
UBC has implemented an Energy Policy for Classrooms and Offices that outlines standards for heating, cooling, ventilation, lighting, IT, and other equipment. The policy provides guidelines for reducing energy use while maintaining the comfort of building occupants.
UBC operates several ambitious energy management programs that reduce the consumption of resources across our campuses.
In partnership with BC Hydro, UBC is implementing an Energy Optimization program in core academic buildings. This program is designed to optimize building performance and then maintain this optimized state through real-time performance monitoring and response, and performance analysis to identify further conservation opportunities. The goal for this program, combined with UBC’s behaviour change programs and initiatives, is to reduce energy use and greenhouse gas emissions by 10 per cent by the year 2015.
UBC has had a building retrofit program in place since 1998. Highlights include:
UBC will build on past success by developing the ECOTrek II program to address more than 500,000 square meters of ancillary buildings on the Vancouver campus. Several ancillary retrofit projects are already in progress: UBC Bookstore, West Parkade, Fraser River Parkade and Rose Garden Parkade.
This project is examining the technical and economic feasibility of various low-carbon and carbon-neutral alternatives to the existing natural gas-based steam district heating system on the Vancouver campus. The study is also exploring thermal and electrical demand side measures to reduce campus energy consumption and shift away from fossil fuel use.
The following major construction/renovation projects will deliver alternative energy technologies to minimize the building thermal load and greenhouse gas emissions in new and renewed buildings:
See energy consumption and conservation in action through the Pulse Dashboard of various campus buildings. The software tracks the exact amount of energy being consumed at any given moment, analyzes it, and displays it in real-time, along with feedback on how the building is performing. For example, a building’s actual energy consumption is compared to expected consumption, based on the building’s previous history, the outside temperature, the time of day, and other factors.
Use the dashboard to track the energy savings and greenhouse gas reductions resulting from simple initiatives like turning off the lights at lunch-time, turning off computers overnight and over the weekend, and making sure that the lighting, cooling, and heating in your workspace is not excessive.
The Kill-A-Watt meter is a small, hand-held device that measures how much energy an appliance consumes to help make informed choices to reduce their energy consumption. If you have a valid UBC library card, you can sign out the Kill-A-Watt meter to use in your office or home.
This study is examining the business case for implementing PC power management software on UBC’s estimated 15,000 PCs, to save electrical energy.
CALL TO ACTION
Contact Lillian Zaremba, Climate and Energy Engineer, for more information.