Energy is among a university’s most necessary and costly expenses. NC State’s aggressive energy management strategies are designed to minimize costs, save natural resources and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

These conservation strategies are successfully reducing campus energy use while enabling the university to progress toward surpassing state-mandated utility reduction goals. As a publicly-funded institution, NC State is mandated by a 2007 Senate Bill 668 to reduce energy use by 30 percent and water use by 20 percent by 2015. Explore more in our Annual Energy and Water Report from 2014-20152013-2014, 2012-2013, 2011-2012, 2010-2011, 2008-2009

Our Progress


(per gross square foot)

Goal: 30% reduction by 2015

Energy Efficiency

In addition to the installation of efficient equipment, NC State uses many strategies and industry best practices to reduce energy demand, ensure operational excellence and maximize energy savings. Read more about efficient operations and equipment. Students also get involved, hosting regular energy saving competitions in residence halls.

Seasonal Initiatives

Why pay to heat or cool an unoccupied building? NC State sets back the temperature controls in strategic campus buildings during winter holiday break when the university is closed and during summer, when classrooms are unoccupied.

Building Commissioning

On a campus with historic buildings and energy-intensive labs, inefficiencies in HVAC systems are bound to occur. Since 2012, NC State’s commissioning team has repaired energy inefficiencies in the following buildings, generating more than $1.95 million in energy cost avoidance:

  • Fox Teaching Lab
  • David Clark Labs
  • Withers Hall
  • Leazar Hall
  • Partners II
  • CVM Research Building
  • Student Health Building
  • University College Commons
  • Carmichael Recreation Center
  • Thompson Theater
  • Engineering Building I (partially commissioned)


Solar Energy

NC State has a long history of solar installations on campus and is a leader in solar and other clean energy technology. See the solar projects on campus


Smart Grid

Emerging smart grid technology has the potential to revolutionize NC State’s energy conservation efforts and the research capacity of Centennial Campus, where smart grid is planned. Get the latest on the campus smart grid


Power America

NC State leads PowerAmerica, a $140 million advanced manufacturing institute that will unite academic, government and industry partners in an effort to revolutionize energy efficiency across a wide range of applications, including electronic devices, power grids and electric vehicles.

The Internet of Energy

Without the electricity delivered over the nation’s power grid, commerce would grind to a halt, communication networks would fail, transportation would stop and cities would go dark. NC State researchers are transforming the power grid with smart grid technology >>>


How NC State Can Help

The university and its Cooperative Extension offer the following resources related to energy and water conservation:

On Campus

Energy Management coordinates water and energy conservation on campus