ITHACA, NY — The new Physical Sciences Building on the Cornell University campus recently earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification at the Gold level, according to the Cornell Daily Sun.
As per university protocol, any and all building projects with budgets of more than $5 million must achieve a minimum of LEED certification at the Silver level, the story stated.
Lanny Joyce, director of energy management for facilities services, said, “You can earn Silver certification without being super efficient in energy. But, achieving Gold — especially for a research building — is an extra stretch in efficiency and materials. In a lab situation, it’s hard to drive energy use lower than we did.”
Things such as variable volume fume hoods for air handling systems and occupancy sensors for lighting help reduce airflow by one third and cut energy consumption by as much as 80 percent — an overall efficiency gain of 44 percent and savings of nearly 40 percent when compared to a traditional building of its kind, the story noted.
After all of the points were tallied, the Physical Sciences Building fell short of LEED certification at the Platinum level — the highest offered by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) — by five points, the story added.
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