A better tomorrow today

The improvements around campus go well beyond adding new buildings and improving the landscape. Skyline has also been working to get L.E.E.D. certification for some of the newer buildings.

L.E.E.D. stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. It’s essentially a rating system supplied by the U.S. Green Building Council that determines how eco-friendly a building is.

Certification is broken into a point scale that measures a building’s performance in six central areas: water efficiency, energy and atmosphere efficiency, material and resource selection, indoor environmental quality, innovation in the design process, and sustainable site development.

“Our district has actually been working on issues of sustainability for quite awhile,” said Skyline President Victoria Morrow.

There are four levels of certification a building can achieve. With a maximum of 69 points that can be earned, only 26 are needed to achieve basic certification. The next level would be silver certification at 33 points, then gold at 39 and finally platinum at 52 points or higher.

In order to achieve L.E.E.D. certification, the points scale must be factored into the design from the get go. All of the six areas must be considered when determining the location and general features of a new building. Things from the amount of energy and water saved, to the accessibility of bus terminals of the building in question all play a role in determining the certification.

“It’s very important to the district to make their buildings as energy efficient as possible,” said Glenn Claycomb, project manager of the Design-Build Project.Currently, two of the three new buildings on campus are aiming for certification. The new Facilities and Maintenance Center, which opens on Nov. 11, has already earned silver certification and is only a few points away from earning gold. The project team is currently working on minor changes and additions to achieve gold certification. Building Four is the other new building working towards certification. It’s reasonable to expect that it will achieve silver certification, but the team working on it is also trying to achieve gold.

“I think the campus does really well with everything that they do,” said Facilities Manager, Richard Inokuchi. “From recycling to being eco friendly, to being environmentally conscious.”

In addition to “green” buildings, Skyline has been leading by example to preserve the environment. With the “One Stream” recycling program in place Skyline has successfully recycled over 80 percent of our waste.

This means that when disposing of recyclable waste, Skyline no longer has to separate recyclables.

“Hats off to the campus because we couldn’t achieve this if people, not just staff, but staff and students weren’t making a conscious effort,” Inokuchi said.