Overall Rating Platinum - expired
Overall Score 85.05
Liaison Lisa Kilgore
Submission Date March 5, 2020
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Cornell University
OP-5: Building Energy Consumption

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.66 / 6.00 Mark Howe
Program Manager
Energy Managment
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total building energy consumption:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Grid-purchased electricity 103,338 MMBtu 718,869 MMBtu
Electricity from on-site renewables 25,205 MMBtu 15,695 MMBtu
District steam/hot water (sourced from offsite) 0 MMBtu 0 MMBtu
Energy from all other sources (e.g., natural gas, fuel oil, propane/LPG, district chilled water, coal/coke, biomass) 3,293,518 MMBtu 2,044,800 MMBtu
Total 3,422,061 MMBtu 2,779,364 MMBtu

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or 3-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year July 1, 2018 June 30, 2019
Baseline Year July 1, 2004 June 30, 2005

A brief description of when and why the building energy consumption baseline was adopted (e.g. in sustainability plans and policies or in the context of other reporting obligations):

Gross floor area of building space:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Gross floor area of building space 16,024,745 Gross square feet 14,346,948 Gross square feet

Source-site ratio for grid-purchased electricity:

Total building energy consumption per unit of floor area:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Site energy 0.21 MMBtu per square foot 0.19 MMBtu per square foot
Source energy 0.23 MMBtu per square foot 0.30 MMBtu per square foot

Percentage reduction in total building energy consumption (source energy) per unit of floor area from baseline:

Degree days, performance year (base 65 °F / 18 °C):
Degree days (see help icon above)
Heating degree days 6,971 Degree-Days (°F)
Cooling degree days 588 Degree-Days (°F)

Floor area of energy intensive space, performance year:
Floor Area
Laboratory space 1,750,689 Square feet
Healthcare space 155,498 Square feet
Other energy intensive space

EUI-adjusted floor area, performance year:
20,331,364 Gross square feet

Building energy consumption (site energy) per unit of EUI-adjusted floor area per degree day, performance year:
22.27 Btu / GSF / Degree-Day (°F)

Documentation (e.g. spreadsheet or utility records) to support the performance year energy consumption figures reported above:

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to shift individual attitudes and practices in regard to energy efficiency (e.g. outreach and education efforts):

Cornell's outreach and education efforts are numerous,
Outreach/engagement efforts include:
Building energy dashboard
Student sustainability leaders
Green Ambassador program
Green Certification Program for Offices/Labs and Events
Sustainability Clubs
Energy smackdown competition
Education efforts include the following:
Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future
Center for Sustainable Global Enterprise
Cornell Institute for Climate Smart Solutions
Cornell Cooperative Extension
Cornell Energy Institute

A brief description of energy use standards and controls employed by the institution (e.g. building temperature standards, occupancy and vacancy sensors):

All digitally controlled buildings are scheduled to relax temperatures during unoccupied periods to reduce energy use.

A brief description of Light Emitting Diode (LED) lighting and other energy-efficient lighting strategies employed by the institution:

Beginning in FY16, a campus wide LED re-lamp program was initiated. The program was completed in FY17. The program reduced electric consumption by approximately 9 million kwh. Prior LED lighting upgrade projects include (1) high bay lighting in many of Cornell's Athletics facilities.
For more information about specific projects and locations: https://energyandsustainability.fs.cornell.edu/em/projsum/default.cfm

A brief description of passive solar heating, geothermal systems, and related strategies employed by the institution:


A brief description of co-generation employed by the institution, e.g. combined heat and power (CHP):

Cornell placed into service two Solar Titan 130 Combustion Turbines (2@15 MWe)with Rentech dual pressure Heat Recovery Steam Generators in December of 2009. In addition, there are two back pressure steam turbines (8 MWe total) that produce electricity with steam prior to the steam being used for heating purposes on campus. These co-generation systems result in a thermal efficiency of approximately 78% and have allowed the university to discontinue the use of coal. Energy generated with co-generation technology includes electric and steam.

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to replace energy-consuming appliances, equipment and systems with high efficiency alternatives (e.g. building re-commissioning or retrofit programs):

All buildings central mechanical systems are re-commissioned on a 24-36 month cycle.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

Electricity from on-site renewables
hydro plant, 7,309 MWh,
campus roof PV 77.8 MWh

Electricity from on-site renewables
hydro plant, 7,309 MWh,
campus roof PV 77.8 MWh

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.