Energy

Powering change together

The largest sources of greenhouse gas pollution from electricity generation in the United States are coal-fired power plants, with the largest emitting plant located in Georgia. Because of the public health and climate impacts of fossil fuel use, Emory’s 2025 Sustainability Vision focuses on energy efficiency and the increased use of renewable energy to mitigate climate change and improve air quality. Achieving this goal will require everyone – from administrators investing in energy efficient systems to individuals changing their habits by turning off lights and computers-to commit to reducing our collective energy footprint.

So Far

  • Since 2015, Emory has achieved an overall energy use per square foot (EUI) reduction of 10.2 percent and an overall total energy reduction of 3.1 percent.
  • Emory’s Sustainable Performance Program (SPP) strives to keep building HVAC systems optimized and prevent performance degradation, which follows building retro-commissioning of existing systems by identifying controls, schedules, faulty equipment or installations, and setting the building back on course for energy efficiency.
  • Renewable energy is on the rise at Emory. As of 2018, four solar projects have been installed and commissioned on campus. The new Campus Life Center will include solar and geothermal components to pre-heat potable water and help heat and cool the facility.
  • A 1mW combined heat and power system operates in Emory’s steam plant. This system recovers mechanical heat produced by Emory’s natural gas generators.

Emory’s 2025 Vision goal is to reduce energy use per square foot by 50% in University buildings and 25% in Healthcare buildings. This graph shows progress toward the University goal in buildings on the Druid Hills and Oxford campuses.

Today

  • Emory is enrolled in the Department of Energy’s Smart Lab Accelerator program, which works to advance strategies that rapidly improve energy efficiency in laboratory buildings.
  • Emory University and Emory Healthcare participate in the Atlanta Better Buildings Challenge, a national competition to reduce energy and water consumption by 20 percent by 2020. Each year, Emory buildings are recognized as Top Performers.
  • A temperature control policy and weekend, evening, and holiday building shutdowns decrease energy consumed to heat and cool Emory’s buildings, which are Emory’s largest stationary source of energy use.
  • Every October, all buildings on campus compete in the annual Energy Competition to reduce the most energy throughout the month.
  • New filters reduce landfill waste by 5 cubic yards and lower our carbon footprint by 368,634 lbs per year! Read more here…

3%

of energy consumption reduced since 2015

1.9M

dollars saved in energy costs by Sustainable Performance Program buildings since 2015.

3.4K+

MWh of self-generated electricity from Emory's steam and solar energy sources since 2017.

Tomorrow

Emory is committed to reducing energy consumption and meeting building expansion, design, and construction standards. By 2025, Emory strives to:

  • Reduce campus energy use per square foot by 50 percent and total energy use by 25 percent.
  • Reduce Emory Healthcare energy use by 25 percent.
  • Self-generate 10 percent of campus energy to replace fossil fuel sources.
  • Incorporate major building renovations into LEED silver commitment or higher and attain best practices for sustainable performance in building interiors.
  • Incorporate regenerative architectural standards such as net zero impact and “living building” in the new Campus Life Center and other innovative facilities.
  • Reduce campus water consumption by 50 percent.