Emory understands how a building is designed, constructed and operated can have profound impacts on the environment and human health. Since the turn of the century, we have followed the United States Green Building Council’s (USGBC) green building program called “Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design” (LEED). The LEED program was established to promote environmentally friendly, whole building design practices, and Engineering Services works with outside engineers and architects to think in new and innovative ways that help to create buildings that conserve energy, water, and the project site's natural environment. Emory has one of the largest inventories of LEED-certified building space among any campus in the country. Some buildings are the first of their kind, including the first certified “Gold” LEED – EB (existing building) in the country (Goizueta Business School in 2004) and the first LEED-certified building constructed in the Southeast (Whitehead Biomedical Research Building in 2000). A map of LEED-certified buildings is continually updated as new projects receive USGBC Certification.
With Emory’s overall recycling goals in place including diverting road and building construction materials from local landfills, Engineering Services works with Campus Planning and Design and Construction to implement comprehensive waste management plans for all construction and renovation projects. This is a requirement of the LEED certification process on the new building projects, however it is our intent to reduce/reuse/recycle as many old or scrap construction materials as possible. Not only can concrete from a building demolition be crushed and reused on-site, but also the red tiles off of an old residence hall can be reused on a new building, for example. Similarly, both old carpet and drywall scraps can be recycled into similar new products that will reduce the need for raw materials from the environment to manufacture them. Emory Recycles coordinates the majority of the University's recycling and assists in logistical planning during the construction projects.