April 10, 2000
Volume 52, No. 28
Herzog's green thumb
Al Herzog is senior project manager for Facilities Management.
Thanks to the efforts of Emory student Aly Reiss, who wrote a letter to The Wheel last fall, I realized there was a need to share information about our ongoing environmental efforts. This led to regular meetings with the Student Government Association's Environmental Task Force.
It's wonderful to see first hand the spirit and commitment of the Emory community to better understand existing programs and encourage us to expand and enhance our efforts.
We have come a long way in the past 15 years with respect to energy conservation and environmental sensitivity. Emory, like many institutions of higher education, saw the need to undertake such efforts in the early 1980s.
At first this meant utilizing stand-alone control systems to ensure energy was being used efficiently in selected campus buildings. This initial success led Facilities Management to expand the Engineering Ser-vices Department and hire an energy engineer to provide special focus on conservation. This new team helped develop design standards that ensured new buildings, or those undergoing major renovation, would have appropriate energy-saving features incorporated into them from the earliest stage of design.
Ongoing efforts today include:
This list represents many but not all of our efforts. We constantly strive to incorporate into our building designs a wider range of building materials that support sustainable philosophies. This includes recycling floor coverings at the end of their useful life, reusing/recycling workstations and purchasing products from like-minded vendors.
Since early last year, FM has been guided in its environmental efforts by the Leader-ship in Energy and Environ-mental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System, a national "green" blueprint developed by the federal government. We are working closely with the University Senate Committee on the Environment to incorporate LEED into our construction and renovation projects, and the program provides us with an independent, objective measure of whether we meet or exceed current environmental building standards.
Emory's strategic planning, as demonstrated in the Quadrangle Energy Plant, resulted in a 1993 Award for Excellence from the Georgia chapter of American Institute of Architects and Georgia Power. This plant initially served five buildings around the Quad, but you will more easily recognize it as Tull Plaza behind the Geosciences Building. In addition to providing a chilled water plant that has expanded to serve 27 buildings and ultimately will serve a total of 40, this project also created a marvelous pedestrian plaza that hosts a variety of functions.
The University also has increased its recycling program and awareness of such efforts on campus. The American Forest and Paper Association chose Emory's as one of America's best paper recycling programs last year. This did not happen by accident--it required diligent oversight to manage the waste stream.
We are also fortunate that the Purchasing Department demands recycled products from vendors whenever possible, which in turn alerts vendors that there is a market for such products here.
Finally, FM recently helped establish the Friends of the Emory Forest, a program to replant trees on campus (see related story, Building Community the Green Way). Members of our department participate in the annual River Clean Up Week and also pitched in at the recent Baker Woodlands cleanup, sponsored by the Ad Hoc Committee on Environmental Stewardship.
In fact, there will be a second cleanup effort in Baker Woods on Saturday, April 15, starting at 1 p.m. If you are interested in volunteering your time, we would love to have you help us with this project.
I hope in the very near future that FM will have a web site to provide additional information regarding our environmental and energy-conservation efforts. Until then, feel free to e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 404-727-7478. We can use everyone's feedback--and help.