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Miami University commits to carbon neutrality by 20040

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Read the Miami 2040: Climate Action Plan for Miami University

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Miami 2040 : Climate Action Plan for Miami University

Miami 2040 Plan lays out the Goals, Targets, and Actions for the Miami University Oxford campus to reach carbon neutrality by 2040.

Decarbonizing Miami’s Campus: Energy-based Emissions

Miami University’s path to carbon neutrality began with our historic residence halls (Elliot and Stoddard) in 2010, when they were converted off steam to geothermal heating and cooling. Since then, Miami’s Utility Master Plan provided a roadmap for the transformation of nearly all the building heating and cooling systems off steam. 

Since then: Miami  has reduced its energy-based carbon emissions per gross square foot by 57% (FY2022, will update with FY2023) , and total carbon emissions by 45%. 

By 2040, Miami will decarbonize our energy-based emissions as much as possible, and offset the remainder. 

Strategy: Further reduce energy consumption, complete the transition of building heating and cooling systems off steam; produce zero-emissions energy on-site; procure purchased electricity from renewable sources; and offset the remainder.

Goal 1: By 2040, achieve carbon neutrality for emissions associated with fuel combustion on campus, including power production and campus fleet (Scope 1).

Target 1: Complete the transition of building climate control systems from energy-intensive steam to low-temperature heating hot water and simultaneous heating and cooling by 2027.

  • Action: Miami’s utility master plan, implemented in 2012, takes an eight-phase approach to convert buildings to more efficient heating and cooling systems. Many of these buildings will utilize geothermal exchange to enhance efficiency further and reduce reliance on fossil fuels. By 2027 Miami’s steam plant will be converted to Heating Hot Water. A concise summary of the plan is in appendix x. 

Try each goal as an accordion Goal 2: Achieve carbon neutrality for GHG emissions from purchased electricity (Scope 2)

Goal 2: Achieve carbon neutrality for GHG emissions from purchased electricity (Scope 2) 

Target 1: Produce zero-emission energy on-site. 

  • Action: Implement On-site Solar. The Oxford Campus base load capacity is 7 megawatts. Exceeding this threshold would require a net metering agreement with the utility provider (Duke Energy) or on-site battery storage. Several sites on campus have been assessed for feasibility and solar infrastructure costs are being monitored. 
  • Action: Procure purchased electricity from renewable resources 

Target 2: Explore the feasibility of renewable energy credits (RECs) from off-site clean energy. 

  • Action: The base load at the Miami Regionals Hamilton campus is 200 kW. The City of Hamilton has met with Miami to discuss the potential for net metering which would allow for excess production of energy. This is not currently feasible but will be continuously reassessed. **Emissions from Miami’s regional campuses are not included in the Oxford carbon footprint, but initiatives on these properties can count as internally produced renewable energy credits (RECs) or carbon credits.
  • Action: Contract with a developer to build a solar array on-site or at an off-site location, and purchase the power and associated RECs. 

Target 3: Offset unavoidable emissions from purchased energy (Scope 2) sources beginning in 2040. 

or each section as accordion Emissions from Commuting and University-financed Travel (Scope 3)

Scope 3 emissions include all greenhouse-gas emissions not covered by Scopes 1 and 2. These are emissions that are associated with Miami University activities but are not directly caused by the University’s consumption of fossil fuels or use of electricity. There are numerous sources of Scope 3 emissions; however, the Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments requires the Climate Action Plan to consider only those emissions caused by:

  • Commuting: Emissions produced by faculty, staff, and students commuting daily to campus in personal vehicles, and
  • University-financed air travel: Emissions generated off-campus when faculty, staff, and students travel on official campus business.  

These emissions typically account for about 16% of Miami’s annual MTCO2e emissions.

Strategy: Reduce barriers to and equitably increase accessibility of alternative transportation modes and reduce the campus drive-alone rate. Reduce as much as possible Miami’s Commuting and University-financed travel emissions, and offset the rest.

Goal 1:  Update the Campus Circulation Master Plan in coordination with the City of Oxford’s goal to create carbon-neutral mobility systems, as specified in Oxford’s Climate Action Plan (adopted Sept. 18. 2023). 

Target 1: Update campus circulation and related transportation plans in collaboration with the City of Oxford in 2024 to ensure alignment in relation to emissions reduction goals.

and LOTS MORE 

Dashboard Data

 

Energy-based Carbon Emissions Reductions (2008-)
Fiscal Year Total Utility (MTCO2e) % Carbon Reduction/GSF KBTU/GSF % Carbon Reduction Total
2008 124,660.84 0% 165.8 0%
2009 113,000.64 -9% 168.5 -9%
2010 118,232.36 -15% 139.7 -5%
2011 117,680.57 -16% 140 -6%
2012 103,847.08 -26% 130.9 -17%
2013 95,621.99 -32% 131.2 -23%
2014 105,678.51 -28% 129.3 -15%
2015 98,080.77 -32% 123.7 -21%
2016 80,010.43 -46% 111.5 -36%
2017 77,897.99 -48% 105.3 -38%
2018 76,548.83 -50% 105.3 -38%
2019 70,748.75 -54% 100.9 -43%
2020 64,251.45 -59% 87.87 -48%
2021 60,515.82 -62% 83.93 -51%
2022 68,385.10 -57% 93.93 -45%
2023 60,439 -62.5% 87.3 -51.5%

Energy Source Comparisons (2008-)
Fiscal Year Electricity (kwh) Electric (MTCO2e) Coal (tons) Coal (MTCO2e) Natural Gas (MMBTU) Natural Gas (MTCO2e) Campus Buildings Square Footage Utility MTCO2e/GSF
2008 93,235,800 65,927.56 23,004 50,720.77 150,623 8,012.51 6,287,767 0.019825932
2009 96,844,723 67,111.51 8,400 18,247.05 519,271 27,642.08 6,287,767 0.017971506
2010 96,020,162 65,790.01 21,561 46,378.09 113,842 6,064.26 7,009,149 0.01686829
2011 94,530,634 64,769.43 22,410 47,221.73 106,805/td> 5,689.41 7,056,967 0.0166758
2012 94,866,364 59,627.43 17,399 35,432.25 165,076 8,787.40 7,050,833 0.014728342
2013 90,560,046 56,920.73 8,410 17,085.79 406,338 21,615.47 7,050,833 0.0135618
2014 91,223,068 57,553.92 19,121 38,951.82 172,553 9,172.77 7,426,682 0.014229573
2015 91,023,374 57,427.93 14,347 28,501.50 228,900 12,151.34 7,251,940 0.013524763
2016 89,903,426 51,035.43 1,277 2,463.58 499,407 26,511.42 7,518,061 0.010642429
2017 93,150,893 52,878.92 0 0 471,295 25,019.07 7,493,419 0.01039552
2018 91,540,900 49,746.58 0 0 505,258 26,822.02 7,764,288 0.00985907
2019 91,374,329 45,371.55 0 0 478,042 25,377.24 7,829,630 0.00903603
2020 86,321,799 42,725.65 0 0 405,491 21,525.81 7,967,320 0.00806437
2021 78,801,237 39,003.29 0 0 405,081 21,512.53 8,029,764 0.007536438
2022 89,048,543 44,075.28 0 0 445,884 23,670.11 7,977,093 0.008572684
2023 84,999,913 39,192 0 0 419,094 22,248 8,119,318 0.00744397

Climate Commitment: Scope 1, 2, and 3 Emissions (MTCO2e)
Fiscal Year Gross (MTCO2e) Fuel/Vehicle Fleet (MTCO2e) Natural Gas Purchased Electricity Commuting Air Travel
2019  85,718 814 25,377 45,372 7,251 4,465
2022 81,236 640 23,670 44,075 5,919 4,465
2023 71,266 576 22,248 38,192 5,295 4,955

Note: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Miami’s Oxford’s campus was not fully open during FY 2020 and FY 2021, and so those years are not included for the PCLC Climate Commitment comparison.