Sustainability & LEED

Campus Recycling Program and Energy Conservation

At USF, we make it a responsibility to recycle our waste and provide a variety of solutions for recycling items. As we make strides to become a greener university every day, we are always searching for ways that waste can be re-used for other resources. We are focused on Recycling, Energy Conservation, Water Conservation, and Storm Water Pollution Prevention.

Recycling

The University of South Florida has had an active recycling program since 1994 and currently recycles the following items:

  • Mixed paper (office paper, newspaper, magazines, cardboard)
  • Aluminum cans
  • Glass and plastics
  • Mixed metals
  • Yard debris, tree limbs and wooden waste
  • Fluorescent bulbs and fixture ballasts
  • Electronic equipment

USF has recycled over 7100 tons of paper, and over 48 tons of aluminum. It operates a Community Recycling Site located on USF Sycamore Drive working with the City of Tampa.

Energy Conservation

USF has implemented the following features to contribute to energy conservation:

  • Green Lights Program
    As part of the Green Lights Program, the University of South Florida has upgraded the lighting systems throughout the Tampa campus academic buildings with modern, high efficient electronic ballasts and energy conserving fluorescent bulbs. This program currently saves over $1 million annually, and over $11 million kilowatt-hours annually.
  • Conversion to F28 Fluorescent Lamps
    This initiative is currently underway and is designed to replace F32 (32-watt) lamps with F28 (28-watt) lamps.
  • Motion Sensors
    Tampa campus classrooms have been retrofitted with electronic motion sensors that turn off the lights when classrooms are not in use.
  • Energy Monitoring
    A comprehensive energy metering and monitoring system has been installed to track and help optimize energy usage at Tampa campus buildings.
  • Environmental Controls
    Many of the Tampa campus buildings have been retrofitted with Direct Digital Control Systems that optimize the usage of air conditioning systems.
  • Building Optimization
    Air handling units are typically the largest energy consuming equipment in our facilities. Reducing waste by operating them in a scaled down mode when the facilities are unoccupied offer one of the major energy and cost saving opportunities. To accomplish this, the University has implemented and developed a computerized energy management system.
  • Solar Efficient Roofs
    Many of the Tampa campus buildings have been retrofitted with High Solar Reflective Index roofing materials. This reduces building heat load and cooling energy usage.
  • High Efficiency Chillers
    The USF Tampa campus has replaced inefficient gas and electric operated chillers with the most energy efficient electric chillers available.
  • Boiler Efficiency
    The USF Tampa campus has replaced old, inefficient boilers with new high efficiency boilers in order to reduce natural gas usages.
  • Heat Pipes
    Environmental systems at the MDF, MDH, and BSF buildings are equipped with heat pipe energy recovery systems to reduce energy usage.
  • Improvement in Efficiency of Campus Pumping of Chilled Water and Chiller Performance
    This current initiative involves converting chilled water distribution system from primary/secondary pumping to variable primary pumping to increase temperature difference between supply and return chilled water in order to improve chiller performance.
  • Underground Utilities
    USF Tampa campus design standards have been updated to have high efficiency insulation on all underground chilled water and hot water distribution piping. 
  • Competitive Purchase of Natural Gas
    Following the deregulation of utilities, we have introduced a natural gas purchase program in the new competitive marketplace. By using this competitive strategy, the University has saved over $9 million since inception of this project.
  • Water Conservation
    Many of the Tampa campus buildings have been reconstructed with motion sensing automatic faucets and flush valves. This helps prevent waste and conserves water usage.
  • Storm water Pollution Prevention
    Keeping Florida's bodies of water clean is essential to a healthy environment. USF has taken aggressive steps to minimize the impact to the Florida's bodies of water.

Water Conservation

Many of the Tampa campus buildings have been reconstructed with motion sensing automatic faucets and flush valves. This helps prevent waste and conserves water usage.

Storm water Pollution Prevention

Keeping Florida's bodies of water clean is essential to a healthy environment. USF has taken aggressive steps to minimize the impact to the Florida's bodies of water.