Energy and Greenhouse Gas Reduction

Since committing to reach carbon neutrality by 2050, the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) has been finding ways to reduce its energy consumption on campus. Carbon neutrality is an effort to decrease greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. Greenhouse gases are the result of human activities such as deforestation, land use change, and fossil fuel burning. 

For the most up-to-date version of UMB's greenhouse gas inventory, visit the SIMAP website.

Energy use is one of the top contributors to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, which is contributing to climate change. To combat climate change, UMB is reducing its use of electricity, fuel, and steam while investing in renewable sources of energy. UMB has made strides in creating more efficiencies in its building systems to reduce energy including: 

  • Replacing older lighting with more energy-efficient LED light bulbs
  • Examining heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment in addition to lighting, plumbing, and other infrastructure systems to identify deficiencies and needed repairs
  • Metering to track and access energy usage data
  • Building automation to create standard set points for heating and cooling interior spaces
  • Building to LEED Silver standards
  • Investing in renewable energy

UMB’s Energy Reduction Team was formed in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The reduction team’s work allowed the University to save over $2 million during the months of April to November.

Renewable Energy at UMB

UMB is part of three renewable Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs) through the University System of Maryland (USM). These PPAs help UMB meet the state's Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) and the requirements under the Climate Solutions Now Act of 2022.

  • Pinnacle through US Windforce
  • St. Mary's Solar through Constellation
  • Roth Rock Phase II through Synergics-SBR
    • (Note: Delmarva Power and Light receives 40 MW of the project's output, and the USM and Maryland Department of General Services take the remaining 10 MW.)

Pictured below is the Pinnacle project located in West Virginia.

wind turbines part of Pinnacle project