Energy-Related Frequently Asked Questions

What are greenhouse gases? 

Greenhouse gases (GHGs) exist in the earth’s atmosphere. They absorb and trap heat from the sun which results in global warming and climate change. Greenhouse gases include: 

  • Carbon dioxide (CO2)
  • Methane (CH4)
  • Nitrous oxide (N2O)
  • Industrial gases:
    • Hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs)
    • Perfluorocarbons (PFCs)
    • Sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)
    • Nitrogen trifluoride (NF3) 

Source: US Energy Information Administration

What is CO2e? 

The shorthand for “carbon dioxide equivalent” (also written as CO2 equivalent). We often hear about carbon offsets and carbon neutrality but that is actually a generalized term to include all of the greenhouse gases. CO2e is a conversion of all other greenhouse gases’ impacts beyond carbon dioxide.

Source: https://www.epa.gov/ghgemissions/understanding-global-warming-potentials

Why does my office feel warmer in the summer time and cooler in the winter? 

UMB uses building automation to control temperature settings. As seasons change, the building automation system automatically adjusts to a range that can save energy but still maintain at a comfortable level.

What is building automation? 

Building automation allows UMB to control building HVAC equipment and lighting remotely to ensure optimal operations. As issues arise, we can troubleshoot the problem quickly to resolve the customer's issue. Doing this remotely via computer can save time instead of dispatching a technician to the building.

Building automation also can save damage to equipment and prevent loss of research. Critical alarms are monitored to ensure rapid response to issues.