Sustainability is about ecology, economy and equity.- Ralph Bicknese

CAP Part 2: Building Standards and Space Planning


SPU’s Science Building was the first building on campus to be
LEED Certified.

Last week’s post introduced Seattle Pacific University’s climate action plan. The plan lays out a strategy for the University to become climate neutral by 2036. Part of the climate action plan deals with the University’s building standards and space planning policies.

The climate action plan commits SPU to a high level of green building standards. This includes designing all new buildings to meet LEED Silver requirements.  In addition, certain LEED credits are identified as “SPU priority credits” to ensure new buildings are extremely energy efficient and powered, at least in part, by renewable energy.

SPU is also committed to reducing the environmental impact of a building’s site location. This includes providing habitat and promoting biodiversity, managing stormwater runoff, and refraining from developing environmentally sensitive sites.

Another area of emphasis is reducing energy usage. One of the easiest ways to conserve energy is to turn buildings off when not in  use. Through space utilization studies, the University can consolidate evening classes into fewer buildings and improve scheduling density during off-peak hours, thereby taking more buildings offline earlier, saving energy. The climate action plan outlines other ways to curb energy use, through optimizing energy performance and producing on-site renewable energy.

These are just some of the initiatives SPU is enacting to meet its climate goals. To learn more, check out the full climate action plan here.


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