Cardinal Green Buildings

Stanford operates and maintains hundreds of campus buildings. While advanced systems ensure these buildings operate efficiently, a critical tool in helping further reduce Stanford’s energy use is the collective action of building occupants. The campus has practiced a two-week energy curtailment during the annual winter shutdown since 2001, turning off heating systems and custodial services in many buildings.  In addition to enjoying a well-deserved break, participating departments have saved $4 million in utility costs through this program over the past 15 years

The Cardinal Green Buildings campaign was created in 2013 to help advance energy reduction programs operated by the department of Sustainability and Energy Management (SEM), and since then, the Office of Sustainability (OOS) has worked with partners in Facilities Energy Management (FEM) and Zone Management to develop additional opportunities for targeted energy reduction. The campaign engages and educates our campus community in energy conservation measures that can have a significant impact on building sustainability. Starting this year, the Cardinal Green Buildings campaign will be orchestrated through the new My Cardinal Green program, which tracks and rewards individual contributions to campus sustainability. 

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Get Involved

Both building managers and individuals alike have the opportunity to complete actions via My Cardinal Green that will help to maximize energy conservation. All of the actions will also help to increase the energy and occupant engagement scores of the Building Sustainability Ratings, which recognize high performing buildings, identify where additional resources need to be invested, and further motivate action. 


For a specific list of actions you can take to reduce your energy footprint over the holidays, that puts the conservation savings back in your pocket, look no further than My Cardinal Green. You'll receive a customized list of  small but impactful steps you can take to support conservation efforts (such as attending a Sustainable Office Spaces training or swapping your space heater for a free fleece), earn points toward your reward ($75), and support your building's sustainability rating.  

Building Managers

At the building level, the program targets a shutdown of heating and ventilation systems, as well as custodial services, to conserve energy during closures.  FEM and OOS work with specific buildings to facilitate a shutdown during Thanksgiving and Winter Closures.  As a building manager, you qualify for a $250 incentive once you earn 100 points through the My Cardinal Green online platform.

Throughout November and December, Office of Sustainability will send an email with new actions that are available through My Cardinal Green to support this campaign. In addition to making progress towards your $250 incentive, all building managers who complete five or more actions related to this campaign will be entered into a raffle for one of several $750 cash rewards. Examples of applicable actions include submitting your building’s winter closure participation form, reminding occupants to attend a training or reduce energy consumption, and more. Be sure to sign up before November 6 so you don’t miss out on any of these actions!