Monday, April 20, 2009

Arizona State University - Example of the Sustainable Recycling of an Old Building

Arizona State University is another example of a unversity that has committed itself to being a model of sustainability. One of it's major sustainable initiatives was the recycling of its former nursing building. After totally renovating the building, the university installed six wind turbines on its roof. In the following year, it plans to add solar photovoltaic panels to the building's roof. It also used recycled materials for the buildings insulation, counter tops and furniture. Finally, it implemented an automated landscape watering control system that has reduced the water consumption of the building by 50 percent. Today, the building is the location of the Global Institute of Sustainability created to coordinate all of Arizona State University's initiatives to promote sustainability. The recycling and renovation of this building is part of a larger campus-wide sustainable initiative that includes the installation of solar panels at other locations on the campus to produce a total of 12 MW of electricity, the establishment of a solar photovoltaic testing laboratory to test solar equipment, the establishment of a laboratory for algae and biotechnology research, the establishment of the Phoenix Urban Research laboratory to research the urban problems facing our cities, the establishment of the Decision Center for an Urban City to explore water management solutions for a desert city, and the establishment of the Okala Sustainability Initiative to teach students how to look at design in terms of sustainability and life-cycle recycling, and the establisment of a Sustainability House (dorm) for honor students at Barrett honors college who are interested and committed to the concept of sustainability.