Over the years, university leaders have made promises to reduce the carbon footprint of their institutions and meet increasing goals for energy sustainability. But while many of the people who made those promises have retired or moved on, the deadlines to update existing infrastructures are fast approaching and current administrations have a responsibility to make good on these commitments. To do so, they are commissioning master plans to address the campus utilities, looking for holistic ways to solve the problem and achieve one of three primary goals: carbon reduction, carbon neutrality and, the most challenging, net-zero.
In a recent interview for District Energy, IDEA U.S. Green Building Council Liaison and RMF Executive Vice President Tim Griffin sat down with utility master planning expert and RMF Principal Andy Jones. Andy has more than 20 years of experience as a master planner and has been intricately involved in projects at over 100 campus including Harvard University, Yale University, and Ohio State University. In the process, Andy has helped these institutions find sensible solutions that meet sustainability goals and reduce carbon footprints. As they discuss the biggest challenges college leadership faces in a utility redesign, Tim and Andy share the best strategies for meeting advancing deadlines and how to ensure that promises are kept, while still deferring up-front capital.