Energy, Water, and Material Conservation


Energy management and conservation is a priority at CSU. In November 2008, the CSU Board of Trustees adopted its first Energy Master Plan that addressed the strategic challenges of energy reliability, energy conservation and sustainability.

The plan is a multi-year, cost effective program that implements energy efficient projects that reduce energy consumption, address the safety and comfort of the University community, and restore the quality and sustainability of the University’s asset base.

The plan targets a reduction in energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions of 45 % and 47% by Fiscal Year 2014 as compared with Fiscal Year 2004. By deploying this plan, the University’s energy consumption as quantified in mmBTU/sq. ft. will be reduced to .054.

Beginning in February 2012, energy savings will be monitored, reported and documented for a performance period of 2012 through 2021.

Waste and Recycling

According to Natural Capitalism (Paul Hawken, Amory Lovins and L. Hunter Lovins), 99% of the consumer products on the market today are consumed within six months of purchase. Some of these products can be recycled, and by capturing and recycling these materials, CSU can become a leader in the community by reducing the amount of virgin resources for new products, as long as the recycled material actually displaces raw or virgin material.

The University is working to develop, fund and deploy an integrated waste management plan. The plan could include voluntary goals for waste diversion, waste reduction and recycling. The program could target the amount of materials that are land filled by reusing them where possible, recycling, and reuse of green waste.

Potential performance improvement metrics are:

  • Total solid waste and recycled material generated
  • Campus diversion rate, e.g. other materials (furniture, carpet, fixtures reused or recycled; construction and demolition waste recycled; green waste composted or mulched; recycled glass, metal, plastic and paper; land filled material)
  • Waste generated per capita (measures pounds/person/year)
  • Hazardous waste generated and disposed: chemical waste (electronic waste, fluorescent light bulbs, ballasts, batteries and chemicals); radioactive waste, if any; and biohazardous waste.

Water Conservation

Water conservation infrastructure improvements are being addressed in CSU’s energy conservation and management program. Areas for future exploration of water conservation are:

  • Reuse of condensate from HVAC and cooling systems for irrigation.
  • Use of reclaimed or recycled water for gray water applications.

Metrics for ongoing measurement of water conservation are:

  • Gallons of water consumed and water consumption per capita
  • Percentage of campus square footage sub metered for water use
  • Gallons/day of wastewater discharge
  • Percentage of high efficiency water fixtures installed on campus
  • Percentage of landscaping planted with drought-resistant plants