University of California Merced earns 17th LEED platinum certification

Ten years after receiving its first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the University of California (UC), Merced in Merced, California, has earned platinum certification for its Classroom and Office Building 2 (COB2).

This marks the campus’ 17th LEED certification for new construction and its eighth platinum designation.

“From day one, we made a deliberate commitment to build to highest sustainable standards,” Assistant Director of Sustainability Mark Maxwell says. “With each new building, we’re proud to demonstrate that we’re keeping that promise.”

COB2 opened in fall 2016, providing much-needed classrooms, tutorial space, research labs and academic and administrative offices to support the campus’ projected growth, the university says.

Some of COB2’s sustainable features include diverting 93 percent of its construction waste from landfills; using 51 percent recycled content during building construction; and being 43 percent more water efficient and 46 percent more energy efficient than California code requires.