Operations and Sustainability
Operations involves all aspects of day to day activities that impact the learning and living environment of Rensselaer students, faculty, and staff. Specific areas include building maintenance and cleaning, upkeep of lawn and garden areas, operation of campus vehicles, operation of building mechanical and electrical systems, use of energy and water, dining services, waste disposal, and all construction operations.
RPI has committed to LEED certifications for all new campus building construction. EMPAC is LEED certified and the East Campus Athletic Village is planned to be LEED silver certified. The Center for Biotechnology and Interdisciplinary Studies building is extremely energy efficient with a naturally ventilated atrium, heat recovery on the lab ventilation air, and many other systems. Energy savings measures also include many innovative technologies like variable speed motor controls, lighting controls, and building management computer systems.
Renovations are done to further the mission of Rensselaer in accordance with The Rensselaer Plan. However, during the routine maintenance of campus facilities, changes are being made to increase efficiency, such as retrofitting to lighting and retro-commissioning of HVAC systems. Additionally, projects in distributed energy generation and solar water heating are being explored in new and existing facilities.
Environmental Services uses Green Seal certified cleaning products for all situations where practical, except for bathroom disinfectant, glass cleaner, and floor finish.
Campus Planning and Facilities Design spearheads the LEED certification of new construction, while Physical Facilities manages the smaller retrofitting and renovation projects, and Environmental Services oversees the cleaning guidelines.
40% of produce is purchased locally. All of the milk used comes from Binghamton, NY. Sodexho fully supports the Terra Café, a student-run local and organic once-a-week sit-down dining experience.
Currently, the average daily food waste about 600 lbs. A composting project is in the research and development stage. Sodexho is planning on composting all food waste. There has a