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Sustainable 2nd Century

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Campus Progress: UC Davis West Village

Demonstrating zero net energy

Image: Students waiting for the bus at West Village.

Students waiting for the bus at West Village, which uses energy-efficient designs to strive for a zero-net-energy community.

UC Davis West Village has been designed to become a community that uses zero net energy. A zero net energy building or community is one that consumes no more energy than it produces in a year. This goal will be achieved by combining efficient design with renewable, on-site energy production. 

A $2.5 million grant from the Department of Energy and a $1.9 million grant from the California Energy Commission support the design and analysis of the project, including evaluation of a biodigester developed at UC Davis that can convert food scraps into power. Other potential technologies that will help the community meet the goal of zero net energy include energy-efficiency measures in building design (passive and active) and distributed solar photovoltaic to create electricity from the sun.

The project draws on research and expertise from UC Davis centers and programs. Several energy research centers have moved to West Village to establish the UC Davis Energy and Transportation Center, the first "uHub," or innovation hub on the campus. It includes:

In February 2013, West Village was on track to produce as much energy as the community consumes.


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