How Stanford earned a ‘STARS Platinum’ rating from AASHE

September 19, 2017

Stanford University has long been synonymous with innovation, expertise, and a diverse culture of students and faculty. Its proximity to Silicon Valley and top engineering and math programs make it a regular recruiting ground for some of the world’s biggest tech companies.

In August 2017, Stanford proved to still be on the forefront of the educational world when it received a Sustainability Tracking, Assessment, & Rating System (STARS) Platinum rating from the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE). Stanford is only the second higher education institution to receive this rating.

Such an award cements Stanford’s place at the head of the pack of higher education. It highlights the fact that the energy sector as a whole is focused on energy conservation and management to create a more sustainable future. But how did an institution with a large building portfolio earn recognition for its sustainability efforts?

Using BuildingOS has played a major role.

The unique features of BuildingOS make it a perfect fit for organizations like Stanford with a large, diverse campus. The software’s intuitive energy tracking and sustainability analysis makes energy conservation and management a streamlined, efficient, and simple process.

BuildingOS is unique because it pulls data streams from sensors across an entire portfolio of buildings. When Stanford installed solar panels in 15 different locations across its campus, they were able to track power generation – and the energy conservation that directly resulted from the smaller dependence on fossil fuels – all in one place.

When Stanford built its 67 megawatt off-campus Stanford Solar Generating Station in December 2016, the university used BuildingOS to gather, understand, and use energy conservation and management data. That data is gathered into a central dashboard where sustainability reporting is easily accessible and understood.

By comparing the data from buildings using power generated from their solar arrays to buildings still entirely dependent on fossil fuels, Stanford can make informed decisions backed by quantitative data with continued energy savings and sustainability programs.

The efforts Stanford University has made in sustainability are evidence of the growing trend of energy conservation and management throughout the world, but particularly within organizations which own a large portfolio of buildings. As stated by National Real Estate Investor Online, “There is a growing expectation to display a commitment to sustainable practices, which is encouraging owner/operators (of buildings) to pursue green upgrades.”

What Stanford showed by earning the STARS Platinum rating is a blueprint for large-scale sustainability success. Even an organization with energy demands as high as a university has the ability to more responsibly manage its power consumption.

To learn more about sustainability across large building portfolios, you can look up the 7 must-have sustainability reports your organization needs.