Post Content

photo of wall experiment stationThe late September morning was crisp and clear at MassDEP’s Senator William X. Wall Experiment Station (WES) in Lawrence. An electric vehicle recharged at a new charging station in the parking lot, and a collection of state officials, WES employees, and other interested parties stood outside the newly renovated and expanded laboratory that became the first state building in the Commonwealth to achieve LEED Platinum certification. Given the more intensive energy requirements, the variable hours of operation, and the rigorous health care requirements associated with labs, the LEED Platinum status is considered even more impressive.

Kicking off the event on September 26th, MassDEP Commissioner Ken Kimmel applauded the collaboration and commitment among Commonwealth agencies involved with the project, and gave a shout-out to the staff and construction crew who worked day-in and day-out to complete the project with LEED measures intact. Kimmel framed these accomplishments in a historical context. The building at the current location was constructed in 1952 and was granted standing as a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark in 1975, creating yet another challenge in the renovation process.

photo of energy stakeholders and new plaque

U.S. EPA New England Lab Director Art Johnston; DOER Lead By Example Program Director Eric Friedman; MassDEP Commissioner Kenneth Kimmell; WES Lab Director Oscar Pancorbo; DCAMM Director Hope Davis; U.S. Green Building Council Massachusetts Chapter Executive Director Grey Lee

Hope Davis of the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance, whose agency oversaw the building’s design and construction, extolled the many sustainable virtues of the building. These included the installation of local and recycled materials, double-paned low-emissivity windows, rainwater gardens that collect water for use in toilets and chillers, green and white roofs, daylighting measures, an electric vehicle charging station, a bike storage room with shower facilities, and a 53 kW solar PV array with a live data display in the lobby.

Eric Friedman, who heads up the Department of Energy Resources’ Leading by Example Program, where I intern, highlighted that the growing number of LEED buildings in the state government’s portfolio – 29 total, 28 since 2007, and 18 Gold rated – demonstrated growing comfort with LEED requirements. He added that this and other LEED projects are an integral part of Governor Patrick’s Leading by Example Program. While the Governor’s 2007 Leading by Example Executive Order directed all construction and major renovations of state buildings to meet a Massachusetts LEED Plus green building standard (LEED certification and advanced energy performance), Friedman noted that the lab’s Platinum certification along with state efforts to design zero net energy buildings were evidence not only of the Commonwealth’s progress in meeting this requirement, but also of its achievement in surpassing this already rigorous obligation.

While improvements can and will still continue at the Wall Experiment Station, the attendees roundly and rightly applauded the unveiling of the LEED Platinum plaque on this September morning as a substantial achievement for the Commonwealth.

Written By:


Intern

Cammy worked with the Leading By Example team this fall at DOER. She is currently completing the final pages of her Master’s thesis on solar thermal policy at Tufts University. While at Tufts, she has focused on clean energy and climate policy, and has researched topics ranging from EU bioenergy policies and algal biofuel to democratized streetscapes and municipal energy funding. Directly prior to graduate school, Cammy led a New York State Assemblymember's energy, environmental, and transportation legislative and policy portfolio. She received her AB from Harvard College. Cammy was born and bred in New England, and now enjoys living in Somerville with her husband and 2-year-old daughter, with whom there is never a dull moment.

Tags: , , , ,

Recent Posts

Energy and Environmental Efforts Recognized at 10th Annual Leading by Example Awards posted on Dec 20

Energy and Environmental Efforts Recognized at 10th Annual Leading by Example Awards

Earlier this month, 8 Massachusetts state agencies, public colleges, municipalities, and public sector individuals were recognized at the State House for their leadership in promoting and implementing clean energy and environmental initiatives at the 10th Annual Leading by Example Awards Ceremony. State officials celebrated a   …Continue Reading Energy and Environmental Efforts Recognized at 10th Annual Leading by Example Awards

Baker-Polito Administration Completes 24 Energy Efficiency Projects at State Sites posted on Dec 20

Simple Fix’ Projects Will Save Commonwealth $159,000 in Annual Energy Costs NEWBURYPORT– December 16, 2016– The Baker-Polito Administration today announced the completion of an energy efficiency project at the Plum Island Shellfish Purification Plant and 23 additional “simple fix” efficiency projects at state facilities in   …Continue Reading Baker-Polito Administration Completes 24 Energy Efficiency Projects at State Sites

Baker-Polito Administration Announces $11.4 Million for Municipal LED Streetlight Conversion Program posted on Dec 20

Baker-Polito Administration Announces $11.4 Million for Municipal LED Streetlight Conversion Program

Available to Municipalities That Own Traditional Streetlights BOSTON – December 13, 2016 – The Baker-Polito Administration today announced $11.4 million in grant funding opportunities to help cities and towns across Massachusetts convert traditional streetlights to LED technology through the Department of Energy Resources (DOER) Rapid LED   …Continue Reading Baker-Polito Administration Announces $11.4 Million for Municipal LED Streetlight Conversion Program