Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 79.77
Liaison Josh Lasky
Submission Date April 4, 2023

STARS v2.2

George Washington University
OP-5: Building Energy Efficiency

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.47 / 6.00 Mansi Talwar
Executive Director of Engineering, Utilities and Energy
Department of Safety and Facilities
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Electricity use, performance year (report kilowatt-hours):
kWh MMBtu
Imported electricity 108,643,341.49 Kilowatt-hours 370,691.08 MMBtu
Electricity from on-site, non-combustion facilities/devices (e.g., renewable energy systems) 4,524.96 Kilowatt-hours 15.44 MMBtu

Stationary fuels and thermal energy, performance year (report MMBtu):
Stationary fuels used on-site to generate electricity and/or thermal energy 608,213 MMBtu
Imported steam, hot water, and/or chilled water 0 MMBtu

Total site energy consumption, performance year:
978,919.52 MMBtu

Gross floor area of building space, performance year:
8,496,285 Gross Square Feet

Floor area of energy intensive space, performance year:
Floor area
Laboratory space 807,183 Square Feet
Healthcare space 19,600 Square Feet
Other energy intensive space 66,125 Square Feet

EUI-adjusted floor area, performance year:
10,215,976 Gross Square Feet

Degree days, performance year:
Degree days
Heating degree days 3,621.90 Degree-Days (°F)
Cooling degree days 1,835.80 Degree-Days (°F)

Total degree days, performance year:
5,457.70 Degree-Days (°F)

Start and end dates of the performance year (or 3-year period):
Start date End date
Performance period July 1, 2021 June 30, 2022

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

Electricity use, baseline year (report kWh):
kWh MMBtu
Imported electricity 129,874,444.67 Kilowatt-hours 443,131.61 MMBtu
Electricity from on-site, non-combustion facilities/devices (e.g., renewable energy systems) 0 Kilowatt-hours 0 MMBtu

Stationary fuels and thermal energy, baseline year (report MMBtu):
Stationary fuels used on-site to generate electricity and/or thermal energy 461,987.69 MMBtu
Imported steam, hot water, and/or chilled water 0 MMBtu

Total site energy consumption, baseline year:
905,119.30 MMBtu

Gross floor area of building space, baseline year:
7,315,674 Gross Square Feet

Start and end dates of the baseline year (or 3-year period):
Start date End date
Baseline period July 1, 2007 June 30, 2008

A brief description of when and why the energy consumption baseline was adopted:

GW became the first university in the Washington, D.C., area to join the American College and University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) in 2008. The university, along with more than 660 other higher education institutions, committed to develop a Climate Action Plan for carbon neutrality and to spotlight and support its academic endeavors on climate issues. GW's Climate Action Plan, completed in May 2010, established a 40% carbon footprint reduction target for the institution by FY2025 relative to a FY2008 baseline, and committed to carbon neutrality by FY2040. In 2020, GW committed to accelerate its carbon neutrality timeline to at least 2030.The baseline year was thus adopted for FY2008.

Source-site ratio for imported electricity:

Total energy consumption per unit of floor area:
Site energy Source energy
Performance year 0.12 MMBtu / GSF 0.20 MMBtu / GSF
Baseline year 0.12 MMBtu / GSF 0.24 MMBtu / GSF

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

Documentation 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:

- Green Office Network faculty and staff liaisons are trained by the Office of Sustainability and they pass on that knowledge and encourage water conservation (among other initiatives) through peer education.
- The Office of Sustainability hosts lunch and learns for GW staff that focus on a variety of sustainability topics, including but not limited to energy efficiency.
- GW utilizes digital signage in the common areas of campus buildings to share energy performance data.

A brief description of energy use standards and controls employed by the institution:

GW's design standards include winter (70-71F) and summer (74-75F) temperature ranges for architects and engineers designing new buildings. These generally apply to all buildings with building automation systems. In many buildings there is a secondary set-point for each space temperature for use at night, on weekends or holidays, or at other times when the spaces are not occupied. In some older buildings without building automation systems, the same concept is applied through use of programmable thermostats. Beginning in FY19, GW has commenced the upgrade of pneumatic building control systems to DDC.

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

LEDs have become the standard for new lighting fixtures -- as well as replacements. At the end of the reporting period, about 50% of GW's floorspace (GSF) is covered by LEDs.

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

Several campus buildings incorporate passive solar heating, such as research greenhouses. Four residence halls host solar hot water systems that offset natural gas use by 5-10%. Approximately 3,500 square feet of solar window films have also been installed on three campus facilities: Ames Hall, Rice Hall, and 45155 Research Place (Virginia Science & Technology Campus). An additional 6,200 square feet of solar window films were installed at the Elliott School FY17. The window films reduce solar incidence to help prevent overheating in interior spaces, which both improves occupant comfort and decreases GW’s energy demand for air conditioning during warmer months of the year.

A brief description of co-generation employed by the institution:

GW completed construction of its 7.4 MW combined heat and power (i.e., CHP or cogeneration) plant in 2016 and commenced operation in October 2016. GW's cogeneration plant is designed to jointly produce electricity and steam, thereby increasing the generation and distribution efficiency compared to that of a standard utility company. This increase in efficiency is due to the electric generation waste heat being utilized in the cogeneration process, whereas in the standard utility company power cycle, waste heat is lost by rejecting the condensed steam rather than being reused. GW's plant is designed to produce power for a minimum of two-thirds of the electric loads from Ross Hall and Science and Engineering Hall. Additionally, the plant provides steam and heat to Ross Hall and Science and Engineering Hall, as well as to three residence halls adjacent to Ross Hall (Jaqueline B. Kennedy Onassis Hall, Munson Hall, and Fulbright Hall).

A brief description of the institution's initiatives to replace energy-consuming appliances, equipment, and systems with high efficiency alternatives:

All of the new appliances installed on GW's campus are Energy Star certified, replacing older appliances that may not be. For new construction and large retrofits, large equipment such as chillers and boilers are evaluated from a lifetime cost analysis and GW seeks financial support for the choice towards higher efficiency equipment from the DC Sustainable Energy Utility, which offers rebates for energy efficiency work.

Website URL where information about the institution’s energy conservation and efficiency program is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Energy use in existing buildings comprises approximately 80 percent of the university's GHG emissions. In the first years of implementing the Climate Action Plan, GW prioritized improving building energy efficiency and enhancing IT systems that result in energy use reductions.

The facilties team uses a comprehensive capital improvement plan to strategically implement energy and water conservation projects in campus buildings. Implementation of this program results in a reduction of energy and water consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, and produces short-term and long-term financial savings. Through these projects, GW aims to reduce total energy use from the buildings by 15% (despite increasing GSF).

From 2014-2019,, 70+% of GW's buildings (by square footage) have undergone an energy-efficiency oriented retrofit. That trend is poised to continue in the coming years, with additional capital projects already scheduled.

Utility bills can be provided upon request.

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.