Energy Use and Management Are Key to Our Sustainability Goals

Monday, January 23, 2016

At the University of Kentucky, we continuously ask ourselves: how do we build upon our efforts to positively influence those we serve? One answer is good environmental stewardship and efficient allocation of resources. The energy needed to heat and power the campus is a significant line item on our annual budget. Thus, energy use and energy management are critically important to the overall sustainability goals of the University of Kentucky. 

The cleanest, cheapest kilowatts are the ones we don't use. Conservation and efficiency have been priorities for Facilities Management Division for many years.  In conjunction with our ongoing sustainability efforts, last July we launched an energy conservation program in partnership with Centergistic, Inc. designed to reduce energy costs and conserve natural resources. 

The goal of the energy management program is to provide a comfortable environment while realizing energy efficiencies and reducing expenses for years to come.

The program does not require purchasing new energy equipment or upgrading existing equipment. Instead, Cenergistic engineers work on-site with operations staff to pinpoint opportunities for energy saving, and energy specialists monitor usage in campus facilities. Management employees will learn to monitor energy usage in campus facilities, find conservation opportunities and implement energy savings strategies.

We are very excited to build upon the good work already underway in sustainability. As an example, we have achieved a silver rating from the Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System (STARS), which measures sustainability performance within academics, engagement, operations, and planning and administration. Rating more than 700 institutions on six continents, STARS is the world's most widely recognized standard for higher education sustainability.

In addition, virtually all new construction on campus targets LEED certification from the United States Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. We are also recognized as a silver level bicycle friendly school, and been a designated Tree Campus USA since 2011. You can learn more about our sustainability initiatives here.

This program allows us to continue our work in conserving energy and efficiently, effectively allocating our resources.


Eric N. Monday