The WSU Everett campus has adopted sound environmental practices in big ways and small. For example, we use paper with 100 percent recycled content. We drive hybrid vehicles and electric carts to get around campus. Even switching from paper towels to hand drying in our restrooms has kept tons of refuse from entering the landfill and reduced its CO2 output significantly. Here are several ways WSU Everett practices sustainability.
Washington was the first state to enact legislation mandating that state buildings achieve at least Silver Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) ratings by the U.S. Green Building Council. The WSU Everett building is certified LEED Gold by the U.S. Green Building Council for the sustainability features in construction and operation. The building uses photovoltaic arrays, natural ventilation, natural lighting, rainwater harvesting, radiant flooring, rain gardens and advanced LED fixtures. According to the U.S. Green Building Council, WSU Everett is one of six LEED Gold buildings in Everett, Wash. Read more about LEED certification.
The WSU Everett building sports an 86kW photovoltaic (PV) array of 300 panels (also known as Solar Panels) on the rooftop that can be expanded to 300 kW. This array generates about 10% of the building’s total expected energy needs within a given year. If the PV array is expanded, it will offset up to a third of the building’s annual energy usage. The building is also situated on it’s site to maximize the amount of solar exposure in order to make the system more efficient, as well as to capture as much daylight as possible inside the building. Skylights, shading devices, light shelves, and light wells reduce electrical lighting loads and connect everyone to the outdoors.
Radiant Floor Heat
Occupancy sensors measure carbon dioxide concentration to control heating, cooling and ventilation. Windows open to let fresh air in, and close when sensors detect enough oxygen has flowed into the building. The heat that is generated from the data center is then repurposed throughout the building where needed.
Storm Water Runoff
The building features several rain gardens to help mitigate storm water runoff. A rain garden can be a landscaped area that collects runoff from impervious urban areas such as roofs, plazas, parking lots, lawns, and allows storm water to be absorbed into the ground instead of running straight into storm or sewer pipes. The WSU Everett rainwater harvesting system collects from the ground and roof gardens, and consists of a roughly 19,000 gallon storage tank, water filters and a pump system to circulate the collected rainwater to the toilet fixtures. The system is large enough to allow the toilets to be flushed using rainwater during all the driest part of the year. It is also used to irrigate the landscaping year-round. The building is also designed to use water efficiently. The high efficiency fixtures are nearly 40% more efficient than standard plumbing fixtures. Together, this reduces the amount of water pulled from the municipal water supply by roughly 50% per year.