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Chesapeake College Recognized for Sustainability Leadership

By Better Buildings Beat Team on Feb 28, 2020

On February 27, 2020, DOE recognized Better Buildings Challenge partner Chesapeake College for advances in energy efficiency and resiliency made at its campus in Wye Mills, Maryland.

Chesapeake College has reduced its energy intensity by 24% since 2011, reaching its Challenge goal of 20% energy reduction eight years ahead of schedule. The college saves more than $250,000 annually in energy costs and is committed to achieving carbon neutrality in campus operations by 2025.

The on-campus LEED Platinum-certified Health Professions and Athletics Center, a Better Buildings Showcase Project, has achieved 51% annual energy savings through an array of energy conservation measures including onsite geothermal heating and cooling, solar photovoltaic installation, high-efficiency HVAC equipment, and energy-efficient building materials and fixtures.

Most recently, the college completed a 1.8-megawatt solar array with 1-megawatt battery backup. Through a power purchase agreement and a partnership with the local utility, the college is developing this project into a partial campus microgrid. In times of crisis or disaster, the microgrid will allow campus buildings to serve as critical infrastructure for the regional community, providing stability and resilience.

While adding 20% more campus space, the college has continued to reduce energy usage through equipment upgrades, energy efficiency education programs, and new building and system operations scheduling across the 373,000-square-foot campus. The campus has made sustainability advances beyond energy efficiency as well, including campus-based and publicly-accessible recycling, an electric vehicle fleet and charging stations, and pollinator habitat.

Learn more about Chesapeake College’s commitment to sustainability here, and take a look at pictures below from the tour.

From left to right:

1. Chesapeake College Health Professions and Athletics Center (HPAC), a Better Buildings Showcase Project, which reused 80% of building materials formerly on the site
2. Director of U.S. DOE Better Buildings Challenge Maria Vargas sharing remarks at the college
3. Air handler for pre-conditioning below HPAC. From left to right: Tina Jones, VP for Administrative Services, Chesapeake College; President Dr. Cliff Coppersmith; Paul Renshaw, Director of Facilities
4. 1.8 MW solar PV array in front of HPAC
5. Stormwater remediation area and informational sign
6. HPAC exterior with high-efficiency glass and energy-efficient construction
7. Classroom in HPAC demonstrating high-efficiency glass and solar shades
8. EV charging station under a solar array
9. Chesapeake College, Pepco Holdings Inc., and U.S. DOE teams in front of HPAC
10. Pollinator meadow above a geothermal system