There is a vast array of energy-upgrades that can make an existing building more energy-efficient. Some of the simpler changes involve lighting and lighting controls and high-efficiency equipment, such as air-conditioners and boilers.
Yet many building upgrades are more complicated than simple technology upgrades and require an in-depth knowledge of the building and of systems design. Unfortunately, old technologies in existing buildings often leave little room for improvements and major financial capital is required to address those issues (a phenomenon called ‘technological lock-in’).
At Tufts University, we also try to bundle projects. Combining energy upgrades with a longer payback with ones that are less expensive can enable the university to make more comprehensive upgrades.
Over 70% of buildings at Tufts have had energy retrofits to make them more energy efficient.
Below a partial list of building related energy-efficiency projects at Tufts:
- EPA Green Lights Program (university-wide replacement of lights)
- Fume Hoods (energy-efficiency in laboratories)
- Lighting Upgrades & Motion Sensors (university wide implementation of high efficiency lighting and motion sensors 2003)
- Schmalz House (energy-efficiency remodeling with solar water heater, 1999)
- Steam Traps (efficiency gains in steam lines, 2006)
- Boiler Upgrades (ongoing)
Non-building related energy efficiency technology projects:
Efficiency can be increased in many applications (office equipment, vending machines, vehicles).
Not all, but many of these non-building related efficiency gains are relatively small and time intensive.