Climate Action & Energy

We have now set a new, more ambitious target of being carbon neutral by 2030 and fossil free by 2050.

Approximately 20% of UVA’s electricity comes from renewable sources, including six on-site rooftop solar installations and two large off-site solar farms.

UVA’s Hollyfield facility is a 17-megawatt solar installation featuring 65,000 solar panels located on 160 acres in King William County, Va. UVA also has the 15-megawatt Puller Solar installation in Middlesex County, Va., with 58,800 solar panels. Each solar farm operates under a 25-year “power purchase agreement" with Dominion Energy, in which UVA owns all electricity output of the facility as well as associated solar renewable energy credits, carbon benefits, and environmental attributes. Combined, the Hollyfield and Puller installations eliminate more than 30,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year.

In addition, UVA has installed rooftop solar panels on several buildings, including Clemons Library, Ridley Hall, the UVA Bookstore, and Skipwith Hall, which houses the Office for Sustainability and other units.

The Renewable Energy Tracker helps students, faculty, staff, and the community stay up to date on the University’s progress towards a robust renewable energy portfolio. Since 2018, UVA has led the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) in renewable energy procurement and has been recognized as a renewable energy leader by the EPA Green Power Partnership. 

In renewable energy purchased, UVA ranks: 

 

 

Climate Action Goal

Be carbon neutral by 2030 and fossil fuel free by 2050

Progress:

UVA greenhouse gas emissions 2020 chart

Resources:

UVA Climate Goals FAQs

Greenhouse Gas Action Plan

2020 Greenhouse Gas Inventory Report

Renewable Energy Tracker

Tour UVA's Solar Projects (5m video)

Building Performance Energy and Water Tracker

Climate Action Together: UVA, City of Charlottesville, Albemarle County

 

Energy

Energy at UVA is a complex system that deploys efficiency measures and economies of scale to provide the most reliable power to over 500 buildings housing students, patients, and critical research.

 

UVA’s goals to reduce energy demand and greenhouse gas emissions work in tandem to diversify our energy sources.

Energy Goal

Reduce building energy use intensity 20% below 2010 by 2023 (Better Buildings Challenge)

Progress:

UVA energy and carbon intensity 2020-line chart

Climate Action

In 2011, the University set a goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 25% below 2009 levels by 2025. Through investment in energy efficiency and renewable energy, we achieved this goal in 2019 -- six years ahead of schedule.