Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 61.04
Liaison Tina Woolston
Submission Date March 1, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Tufts University
OP-5: Building Energy Consumption

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 3.09 / 6.00 Shoshana Blank
Education and Outreach Program Administrator
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Figures needed to determine total building energy consumption:
Performance Year Baseline Year
Grid-purchased electricity 259,935.70 MMBtu 226,029 MMBtu
Electricity from on-site renewables 0 MMBtu 0 MMBtu
District steam/hot water (sourced from offsite) 157,809 MMBtu 124,438 MMBtu
Energy from all other sources (e.g., natural gas, fuel oil, propane/LPG, district chilled water, coal/coke, biomass) 355,854.20 MMBtu 263,609 MMBtu
Total 773,598.90 MMBtu 614,076 MMBtu

Start and end dates of the performance year and baseline year (or 3-year periods):
Start Date End Date
Performance Year July 1, 2017 June 30, 2018
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 5,554,374 Gross Square Feet 4,028,442 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 0.14 MMBtu / GSF 0.15 MMBtu / GSF
Source energy 0.25 MMBtu / GSF 0.28 MMBtu / GSF

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 5,493 Degree-Days (°F)
Cooling degree days 733 Degree-Days (°F)

Floor area of energy intensive space, performance year:
Floor Area
Laboratory space 358,461 Square Feet
Healthcare space 141,816 Square Feet
Other energy intensive space

EUI-adjusted floor area, performance year:
6,599,876 Gross Square Feet

Building energy consumption (site energy) per unit of EUI-adjusted floor area per degree day, performance year:
18.83 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):

- Shutting off equipment and lights, as well as taking care of building temperature issues, are both addressed in numerous outreach efforts. They are included in the new staff and faculty orientations, they earn points in the Green Office Certification programs, and the Office of Sustainability provides prompts to Eco-Ambassadors to hang in their offices.
- After Tufts built a LEED Gold building in 2017, the Science and Engineering Complex, Facilities saw the need for occupant education on issues like when to open and shut the windows. This is a very smart building, but still needs occupants to treat it correctly to achieve energy savings. The Office of Sustainability is creating a video to educate the building's occupants.

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

Tufts' temperature policy can be found at:

We adjust temperature settings buildings depending on the season, making it warmer by a few degrees in the summer and cooling in the winter.

Anytime we renovate a building at Tufts we follow the building energy code and sometimes exceed the code. The code requires occupancy sensors. Certain buildings have an occupancy status of Standby mode, which reduces the energy use, but prepares for someone to be back in the room soon.

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

All Tufts capital projects use LED lights by default.
The university is replacing lights on the Medford/Somerville campus quad as they burn out with new LED lights.
In January, 2017, 78 dated fluorescent light fixtures were replaced with 71 new LED fixtures in the 4th floor lab of the Dental Bldg., Boston Campus. This resulted in an annual savings of ~$3,742.54 and a reduction of 19,698 kilowatt hours.
In June, 2018, 270 dated fluorescent light fixtures were replaced with new LED fixtures in the Large Animal Hospital, Grafton Campus. This resulted in an annual savings of ~$22,079.55 and a reduction of 147,197 kilowatt hours. At the same time, 39 new LED fixtures were installed in the Equine and Livestock Teaching Barn (formerly called Goat Barn I). This resulted in an annual savings of ~$4,273.80 and a reduction of 28,492 kilowatt hours.
In December, 2018, 35 new LED fixtures were installed in the Pathology department, Small Animal Hospital, Grafton Campus. This resulted in an annual savings of ~$504.63 and a reduction of 2,968 kilowatt hours.
689 fluorescent and incandescent lighting fixtures were retrofitted with 822 LED fixtures at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in 2017. The annual savings were estimated at $57,298 (286,491 KWh), and the project paid for itself in 5 months.

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

Ground source heat pump in Lane Hall

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

Tufts built a 4MW cogeneration facility, the new Central Energy Plant. Construction was completed in spring 2018 and began providing heating, cooling and electricity for buildings on the Medford/Somerville campus.

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):

Replaced steam absorption chiller at Jaharis, now electric chiller. 65% reduction in the chiller plant’s carbon footprint.
Connecting lower level spaces in the Dental bulding with central HVAC system.
Any opportunities for emergency repairs and general maintenance to use efficiency strategies are being employed.
Replaced cage and rack washer at DLAM with a new energy-efficient appliance.

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

Performance Year = Fiscal Year 2018
Gross square feet includes Walnut Hill Properties used by Tufts, not including the space leased for residential uses. Walnut Hill Properties is a separate corporation, owned by the university, which manages its real estate. The total gross square feet also includes three buildings that Tufts leases at the SMFA (230 The Fenway, 160 St. Alphonsus St., and 1025 Beacon St.). Therefore, the SMFA energy data from these buildings was included for FY18. Tufts acquired the SMFA on July 1, 2016.

Building efficiency efforts have been going on since 1990, so this metric only captures a portion of the reduction in energy consumption per gross sq. ft.

Dining Services at Tufts specifically buys the most energy efficient equipment available in the market and periodically audits their operating processes to identify opportunities to reduce energy and water consumption.

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.