When NYU accepted the Mayor's Carbon Challenge in 2007 to reduce its emissions 30% by 2017 (based on 2006 levels), the university's emissions were about 0.30% of New York City's total. We reached our reduction goal in 2012, five years ahead of schedule. In 2015 we accepted the new Mayor's Carbon Challenge: a 50% reduction in emissions by 2025.
The Break Down: 96.5% of NYU's direct greenhouse gas emissions is attributed to energy use; 1.9% is attributed to waste; and 1.6% is attributed to transportation.
A break down of NYU's direct greenhouse gas emissions by year.
NYU strives to avoid energy waste (conservation), while also accomplishing the same work using less energy (efficiency). This strategy includes:
Use building standards and certifications to ensure that new construction and substantial renovation projects are designed and executed to achieve high-performance EUI (energy use intensity) targets.
Motivate building occupants to use less energy through changes in personal or organizational behavior. The combined effects of many individual actions add up to significant overall savings.
Install improvements to existing buildings to achieve greater efficiency or conservation of energy.
Utilize building management systems, advanced controls, active monitoring, and operator training.
Upgrade and expand cogeneration power plant and minimize the use of fuel oil to heat buildings.
This informative video with John Bradley, former Assistant Vice President of Sustainability Energy and Technical Service, explains how NYU's CoGeneration plant works.
NYU is generating cleaner, more efficient energy on-site with an upgraded and expanded cogeneration power plant. Our cutting edge cogeneration plant, which sits under Warren Weaver Hall and is the largest capital investment in the university's history, went online in 2010. The plant provides heating and cooling to 40 NYU buildings and electricity to 26 buildings, saving the university $5–8 million per year and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 20%. The plant also provides high-temperature hot water, avoiding the annual use of 500,000 gallons of carbon-intensive fuel oil and 280,000 therms of natural gas combustion in buildings.
In addition, cogeneration power takes pressure off the city’s strained electrical grid, reducing the chances of future brownouts, and allows us to resiliently handle such large-scale blackouts as the one we experienced during Hurricane Sandy.