Monday, March 23, 2015

FAMU joins U.S. Department of Energy's Better Buildings Challenge

FAMU has committed to making its entire portfolio of buildings 20 percent more energy efficient within 10 years by joining the Better Buildings Challenge by the U.S. Department of Energy. FAMU will work with the DOE to share its successful efficiency models and help pave the way for other organizations to follow.

"The Better Buildings Challenge partners are demonstrating leadership in a variety of industries, bringing greater energy efficiency to American restaurants, data centers, multifamily housing developments, and cities across the country," said U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz. "Joining hundreds of other organizations, these new partners are taking action to save money by saving energy and cutting carbon pollution, while also creating jobs."

FAMU will soon complete an expansive energy performance contract that is slated to yield millions of dollars in energy-cost savings. In addition, FAMU will undergo an assessment and planning process in the next six months to identify strategic opportunities to achieve energy efficiency goals. The Sustainability Institute, working directly with the University's Office of Facilities Planning & Construction, will steward this commitment and develop a plan. Faculty and students will also be involved in creating new learning experiences designed around this commitment.

"FAMU's participation in the Better Buildings Challenge is a perfect example of our commitment to embed a culture of sustainability into our campus," said FAMU Chief Sustainability Officer Abena Ojetayo. "Pursuing this goal not only improves our building performance, it opens the door for innovation in our facility services, frees up real dollars to advance other mission-critical work, and causes us to practice what we teach and research."

FAMU joins a diverse set of more than 20 other new partners, including six multifamily developments announced by the White House. These new partners bring with them fresh perspectives and leadership in newly represented sectors totaling more than 70 million square feet of fast-food, restaurant, manufacturing, university, and government facilities.

"FAMU is proud to join the esteemed institutions across the nation that understand the importance of sustainability and its role in ensuring the highest level of effectiveness and efficiency in our respective sectors," said FAMU President Elmira Mangum, a signatory of the American College and University President's Climate Commitment.

The Better Buildings Challenge supports the goal of doubling American energy productivity by 2030 while motivating corporate and public-sector leaders across the country to save energy through commitments and investments. More than 250 organizations are partnering with the Department of Energy to achieve 20 percent portfolio-wide energy savings and share successful strategies that maximize efficiency over the next decade. Across the country, Better Buildings Challenge partners are deploying energy efficiency projects at more than 9,000 facilities, with more than 2,100 buildings expected to improve efficiency by at least 20 percent, and another 4,500 by at least 10 percent, compared with their baseline years.

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