College works to become more sustainable

Seattle Central has implemented energy- and money-saving practices

Over the past decade, Seattle Central has made improvements to make its campus buildings much more energy efficient. Against a backdrop of greater efforts by government and industry to reduce greenhouse gas emission and energy consumption, Seattle Central is working to implement new strategies to increase its efficiency, which will result in lower energy costs and a cleaner environment. The Seattle Colleges District is also working to support sustainability with a five-year sustainability plan.

“Becoming energy efficient is the right and responsible thing to do, and will make the college more attractive to younger generations who are choosing who they do business with based on responsibility for sustainable practices,” Director of Capital Projects and Safety Dave Ernevad said.

A major improvement is Seattle Central’s heating ventilation/air conditioning (HV/AC) systems, which require less energy to control the temperature and will result in more cost and energy savings. Another step forward is a grant awarded to Seattle Central by Seattle City Light to install solar panels.

At the college’s main campus and satellite locations, state-mandated equipment has been installed to better monitor energy usage. The Health Education Center has been the leading driver of the energy performance of the Pacific Tower as the building participates in a three-year energy performance pilot incentive program through Seattle City Light; Seattle Central’s Health Education Center is the anchor tenant and a large part of the project.

Faculty, staff and students can play a major role in limiting Seattle Central’s energy usage by doing the following:

  • Turn off lights in unoccupied rooms without automatic sensors when they are not in use
  • Power down monitors, computers and other office equipment at the end of each work day
  • Unplug appliances when not in use