• Water Conservation

    Water in New York City is plentiful and relatively inexpensive, but look to California in recent years to see how rapidly situations can change. Over the last ten years, the price of water has more than doubled in New York City, and water makes up a significant portion (7 percent) of The New School’s utility budget.

    Water consumption is interconnected with energy and has secondary effects. For example, moving water requires electricity-intensive pumping, and hot water requires large heat inputs. Air-conditioning systems often require water, which is evaporated to reject heat.

    Much of the water on campus is consumed by restroom fixtures (faucets, urinals, water closets), particularly in dormitories. A large part of the remainder is consumed by building cooling systems during summer months. The most effective way to reduce the school’s water consumption is through occupant awareness, more efficient water fixtures, and mechanical system management.

    Water-Fixture Replacement

    More efficient EPA WaterSense fixtures are part of a long-term water conservation effort. Upgrades have recently been completed in the Johnson/Kaplan building and Loeb Hall. When expanded throughout campus, upgrades could reduce water consumption by as much as 30 percent.

    Metering and Controls

    Active monitoring and metering systems will both help detect leaks and help us manage consumption better. Real-time building-level and mechanical system water consumption will be available on the sustainability dashboard.

    University Center Water Treatment and Reuse

    Water collected from sinks, showers, and washing machines at the University Center is treated and distributed for reuse in toilets, green roof irrigation, and cooling towers. This system helps save potable water and reduces sewer discharge.