Overall Rating Platinum
Overall Score 85.48
Liaison Emmanuelle Jodoin
Submission Date Dec. 6, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Université de Sherbrooke
OP-6: Clean and Renewable Energy

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 0.02 / 4.00 Véronique Bisaillon
Sustainable Development Education Advisor
Office of the Vice-President, Administration and Sustainable Development
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total energy consumption (all sources, excluding transportation fuels), performance year :
384,390 MMBtu

Total clean and renewable electricity generated on site during the performance year and for which the institution retains or has retired the associated environmental attributes:
0 MMBtu

A brief description of on-site renewable electricity generating devices :

A 1 MW solar park was installed in 2018-2019, accounting for investments of $ 5.9 million. The production results will be effective for 2019-2020.

Non-electric renewable energy generated on-site, performance year:
2,137 MMBtu

A brief description of on-site renewable non-electric energy devices:

Geothermal wells in some pavilions are present on all three campuses and that since 2005-2006. The most recent geothermal system was installed in 2017-2018 at the School of Music and became fully operational in 2018-2019, while another system is planned for next year. These systems total investments account for more than $1.5 million.

Total clean and renewable electricity generated by off-site projects that the institution catalyzed and for which the institution retains or has retired the associated environmental attributes, performance year:
0 MMBtu

A brief description of off-site, institution-catalyzed, renewable electricity generating devices:

Total third-party certified RECs, GOs and/or similar renewable energy products (including renewable electricity purchased through a utility-provided certified green power option) purchased during the performance year:
0 MMBtu

A brief description of the RECs, GOs and/or similar renewable energy products, including contract timeframes:

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:

Additional documentation to support the submission:

Electricity use, by source (percentage of total, 0-100):
Percentage of total electricity use (0-100)
Biomass ---
Coal ---
Geothermal ---
Hydro ---
Natural gas ---
Nuclear ---
Solar photovoltaic ---
Wind ---
Other (please specify and explain below) ---

A brief description of other sources of electricity not specified above:

Energy used for heating buildings, by source::
Percentage of total energy used to heat buildings (0-100)
Biomass ---
Coal ---
Electricity ---
Fuel oil ---
Geothermal ---
Natural gas ---
Other (please specify and explain below) ---

A brief description of other sources of building heating not specified above:

Percentage of total energy consumption from clean and renewable sources:

99.79% of the electricity produced in Québec is produced from renewable sources, as indicated in the fact sheet "Electricity Supply and Air Emissions" as audited by GHD Consultants Limited (GHD) for the calendar year 2018, and which confirms a reasonable level of assurance on the targeted declarations, without any restrictions.

The year 2017 portrayal is similar (99.78%), having been verified by the Bureau de normalisation du Québec. The audit carried out by BNQ certifies that the relevant declarations are accurate and reliable, and that they comply with the principles of ISO 14064-1:2006.

In addition, customers located in the City of Sherbrooke are supplied by the municipal Hydro-Sherbrooke’s network, 96.6% of which is provided by Hydro-Québec. The remaining 3.4% is produced exclusively by Hydro-Sherbrooke's hydroelectric power plants (see here Hydro-Sherbrooke's annual report: https://contenu.maruche.ca/Fichiers/3337a882-4a53-e611-80ea-00155d09650f/Sites/333dd3d3-915d-e611-80ea-00155d09650f/Documents/Bilans%20et%20rapports/RAPPORT_ANNUEL_2018_Version_d%C3%A9finitive.pdf). These power plants are located along the Magog and Saint-François rivers near Sherbrooke and are for the majority run-of-river stations (or low-impact hydroelectric power stations). For the purposes of this declaration, it has therefore been considered that the electricity consumed by the Université de Sherbrooke is 99.78% renewable.

Finally, it is interesting to note that in a life cycle analysis, conducted by the International Reference Centre for the Life Cycle of Products, Processes and Services (CIRAIG), which compared electricity supply chains, including hydropower, other renewable sources and non-renewable sources, hydropower is generally more efficient than other renewable sources in terms of climate change, ozone layer destruction, acidification, eutrophication, human toxicity, photochemical oxidation (SMOG), resource depletion, human health and ecosystem quality indicators. The complete study is available here: https://www.hydroquebec.com/data/developpement-durable/pdf/comparing-power-generation-options-and-electricity-mixes.pdf

Highlights of the University's Energy Strategy
The Université de Sherbrooke is in keeping with the spirit of the criterion: "that support the development and use of energy from clean and renewable sources". And to that regard, a transition from fossil fuels to renewable energies has been taking place for years. For instance, fossil fuels, which made up some 65% of the University’s energy supply in 2002-2003, account for only 33% of the University’s energy supply in 2017-2018. By contrast, hydroelectricity, which made up 35% of the University’s energy supply in 2002-2003, has reached 67% in 2017-2018. In this respect, the value of hydroelectric power in terms of being renewable (consisting of water from annual precipitation over a large area) and clean (vary low greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions) is attested and is Québec’s asset, as being one of the world’s most water-abundant regions. Hydro-Québec produces electricity via two types of hydroelectric generating stations: generating station with reservoir and run-of-river station (or low-impact hydroelectric power station).

A large part of this transition has been made using an energy efficiency approach, i.e., by deploying projects that allow the University to be more efficient while reducing its dependency on fossil fuels. For instance, since 2005-2006, investments of more than $1.5 million have been made for five geothermal projects:
- Life Sciences Pavilion in 2005-2006;
- Sport Center in 2008-2009;
- Longueuil Campus in 2010;
- School of Music in 2016-2017;
- Health Campus in progress.

In 2018-2019, the addition of renewable natural gas to replace 5% of the main campus natural gas consumption was made.

In 2018-2019, the deployment of a solar park (1MW capacity) was made, corresponding to investments of $5.9 million.

Given the supply of hydroelectricity and the Université de Sherbrooke's investments in solar energy, geothermal energy and renewable natural gas, the institution supports the development and use of energy from clean and renewable sources.

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 and complete the Data Inquiry Form.