Grants to Green Award Will Enable Georgia State To Improve T-Deck Lighting and Save More Than $50,000 Annually

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ATLANTA–Georgia State University has received its first Grants to Green award, to be used for lighting improvements that will reduce energy consumption maintenance costs and increase campus safety in its T-Deck parking facility at 43 Auburn Ave.

The $320,680 matching grant came two years after Georgia State applied for and was awarded a core assessment grant from Grants to Green, a partnership among the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, The Kendeda Fund and Southface. The award allowed Georgia State to receive a comprehensive lighting audit and report for T-Deck energy use from Southface, a non-profit organization focused on energy efficiency.

Lighting at T-Deck costs Georgia State $105,145 each year. With assistance from Grants to Green, the university will reduce site energy consumption by 52 percent, saving about $54,434 annually. The grant not only assists with cutting costs by 50 percent but also equates to saving roughly 298 tons of CO2 emissions annually. A reduction in carbon dioxide emissions can decrease environmental and human health risks associated with it.

Using on-site surveys, building documents, cost data and engineering analysis, Southface’s assessment found that 69 percent of the electricity consumed in T-Deck is from its lighting.

Through last year’s assessment, Southface also identified several steps Georgia State could take to improve its efficiency and reduce energy consumption and costs such as:

  • Retrofitting or replacing metal halide and fluorescent lighting with high-performance LED lighting;
  • Using bi-level occupancy-based controls for light fixtures, installing a sensor that turns off lights after a predetermined period when sensing a person is no longer in the space;
  • Bringing light levels up to increase safety.

“We are honored to receive a Grants to Green implementation award, as having the funding available to complete these vital lighting improvements will not only reduce energy consumption and costs but will also increase safety and visibility in the deck,” said Jennifer Asman, manager of sustainability initiatives. “Because LED lighting has a much longer lifetime than traditional lighting, this will also allow our maintenance staff to dedicate more time to other necessary projects on campus.”

After receiving an assessment of its facility and recommendations for how to improve efficiency, Georgia State applied for and was awarded a $160,340 implementation grant to replace 1,421 lighting fixtures and exit signs with LED lights and include integral and local controls where practical. By matching this amount, Georgia State will be able to implement all of the assessment’s recommendations in early 2017.

Begun in 2008, Grants to Green provides environmentally focused knowledge and funding to strengthen nonprofits in the Atlanta region.