Energy Initiatives

In order to reduce energy consumption on campus by 20% per gross square foot of building space by 2020, changes must be made - both operational and behavioral. Clemson University Facilities has implemented several specific operational changes which strive to reduce our campus energy costs and reduce our carbon footprint.  They include utilizing temperature setbacks, demand management techniques, and retrofitting or upgrading lighting. Additionally, buildings across campus that are connected to our central building automated control system (BACS) are programmed for automatic temperature setbacks. 

Per the Sustainable Energy Policy, the following are the areas of some of the initiatives being taken up by Facilities:

Building Management: As time and funding allow we are adding systems to the central building automated control system (BACS) to permit greater control over operating schedules and temperatures to reduce energy consumption. 

Current Efforts:  Facilities is working on installing smart metering on a significant part of campus.

Computers:  While efforts are being made to control campus computer systems through a centralized system, the most effective strategy currently is to encourage students to turn off computers that are not in use.  Another tip is to eliminate the screen saver function since it uses more energy than the sleep mode. A computer left on all day uses nearly 1,000 kilowatt hours of electricity a year, producing more than a ton of carbon emissions.

Current Efforts:  Students are encouraged to take the energy pledge and to turn off computers.

New Construction:  New buildings will achieve a minimum of LEED Silver certification and shall be designed to minimize energy according to the LEED Credit for Optimization Energy Performance. All design processes will include energy life cycle costing analyses.

Current Efforts:  Two of the newest buildings, the LSB and ASC, are in the process of receiving LEED certification.

Lighting:  Most lighting on campus has been retrofitted or upgraded to high efficiency fluorescent lighting with electronic ballasts. Remaining areas shall be upgraded as funding is available. New construction and remodels shall use high efficiency lighting and limit the use of incandescent lighting. Where cost effective, lighting occupancy sensors shall be installed.  Increased use of daylighting and daylighting controls shall be considered because use of daylit spaces decreases energy costs and may improve productivity. 

Current Efforts:  Over 150 outdoor lights are being updated to LED - from Mell Hall to the Reflection Pond.

Heating and Cooling:  During the heating season, room temperatures shall be maintained at 69°F when occupied. Whenever economically and technically feasible, night setback features are utilized to allow temperatures to drop to 55°F during unoccupied periods. During the air-conditioning season, room temperatures shall be maintained at 76°F when occupied. Whenever economically and technically feasible, night setback features are utilized to allow temperatures to rise to 85°F during unoccupied periods. (Some exceptions exist in animal care units, research facilities and computer labs.)

Current Efforts:  A pilot project with occupancy sensors in Holmes Hall is under review for expansion.

Water Usage:  Use of irrigation water shall be minimized through rainfall monitoring. The University shall also investigate collecting stormwater for non-potable uses on campus. Low water use flush valves and flow restrictors on faucets and showers shall be used in restrooms.

Current Efforts:  Clemson is currently investigating collecting stormwater for non-potable uses on campus.

Transportation:   Use of the Clemson Area Transit Bus and car pooling is strongly promoted. Faculty, staff and students are encouraged to walk, bike or use public transportation to get around campus.   Fleet and service vehicles used on campus shall not be left idling. Acquisition of new University fleet vehicles shall be reviewed thoroughly, and vehicles shall be purchased with the highest fuel efficiency possible in accordance with state vehicle management policy.  

Current Efforts: Two 100% electric facilities pickup trucks are in use.

Recycling:  University Facilities is responsible for campus recycling. Currently we maintain the Kite Hill Recycling Center which recycles no. 1 & 2 plastics, aluminum cans, paper, newspaper, cardboard, scrap metal, and oil. Whenever economically feasible, recycling is also expanded to include such things as green waste (for composting), construction waste, and used office waste such as computers.

Current Efforts:  See the recycling website.

Purchasing: Energy efficient and eco-friendly products are purchased whenever possible. 

Current Efforts:  See the University Procurement Policy.

Suggestions? Any suggestions for ways of reducing energy consumption on campus should be addressed to the University Facilities Energy Manager at