The university has established procedures to consider energy/water use and waste reduction in the design and operation of university facilities in the most economical and environmentally friendly manner possible.
Design and Construction Standards
The university's Design and Construction Standards outline the philosophy, standards, recommendations, and requirements for the design and construction of campus buildings. As a component of the Design and Construction Standards, the Guidelines for Energy Efficient Design address the energy-efficiency and on-campus renewable energy utilization requirements. These standards apply to all new construction, addition, and renovation projects on campus.
LEED® Certification Requirements
The U.S. Green Building Council provides a green building certification program known as LEED®, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. This program scores buildings on their level of energy efficiency based on a point system. Currently, Virginia Tech has eight LEED® certified buildings on campus and several others in the process of certification (listed below).
The university has specified that all new buildings entering the design phase of construction that are greater than 5,000 gross square feet in area, or the renovation of such buildings where the cost of renovation exceeds 50 percent of the value of the building, shall conform to LEED® Silver standards.
- Gold Certification – Moss Arts Center, Ambler Johnston Hall, ICTAS II
- Silver Certification – Lavery Hall, Kelly Hall, Theatre 101, Veterinary Medicine Building, Virginia Tech Visitor Center
Energy Star® provides labels for appliances and other products that are superior in energy efficiency. Virginia Tech’s goal is to set a minimum standard for all energy consuming equipment to be Energy Star® rated or better, assuming that the performance criteria are met.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
One of the ways in which the EPA achieves their goal of “protecting human health and the environment” is through improving water quality and efficiency. EPA’s Water Sense program provides product labels, which signify that the product meets the minimum requirements for water efficiency. The university has set a minimum standard for all water-related equipment and fixtures to meet or exceed the EPA’s WaterSense Requirements.