In the Battle of the Buildings, the Weber State University Receiving and Distribution Services Building has placed first for the warehouse category.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency holds the annual competition to measure which buildings have reduced their energy consumption by the highest percentage. According to a press release by WSU Media Relations, the Receiving and Distribution Services Building reduced its energy consumption by 6.3 percent from Sept. 1, 2010, to Aug. 31, 2011. Zach Hansen, shipping and receiving assistant at WSU, said this was in spite of construction and the building being behind on some energy-efficient updates.
“I think it’s a great award to receive, it being a national competition,” he said. “And we had some construction going on this summer too, and winning the award with all the construction going on, that’s pretty great as well . . . They’re redoing all the lights on campus, like to make them more energy-efficient . . . but we didn’t really have it done down here till like a month ago.”
Jennifer Bodine, sustainability specialist at WSU, said the employees of the building have worked hard to reduce their energy consumption.
“I think that they made a concerted effort to make sure that their lights were shut off, and turning off all of their equipment at the end of the day, those sorts of things,” she said. “. . . I think it’s something to be proud of. We work very hard here on this campus to reduce our energy consumption, and so, you know, we were going up against, what, 245 buildings? And, you know, I’m pretty proud that one of our buildings got recognized for reducing a significant amount, but I’m also not surprised, because we have been working very, very hard.”
The EPA awards buildings in various categories for the competition, including banks, hospitals, hotels and churches. WSU entered three more buildings in other categories: the Davis building, the Dee Events Center and the Facilities Management building.
“(The Davis campus) reduced by about 13 percent, so they did really well,” Bodine said. “It’s just they were in a category that was much, much harder to be recognized in; the building that won in that category reduced by, like, 63 percent.”
According to Bodine, the Dee Events Center did not reduce its energy consumption at all during the given time period. She said Facilities Management did reduce its consumption, but was competing in the same category as the Davis building.
“I think we’re looking forward to competing again next year, and hope to enter more buildings and get more involved in the effort,” she said.
The overall winner of the competition was the University of Central Florida’s Parking Garage C, which reduced by 63.2 percent. A full list of the winners in each category is available at www.energystar.gov/BattleOfTheBuildings. More information on the WSU Energy and Sustainability Office and how to be involved in its efforts can be found at www.weber.edu/sustainability.