Academic District Energy System (ADES) –
Begun in 2011, this five‑year $88 million conversion project replaced UBC’s aging steam infrastructure with a more efficient hot‑water system comprising more than 11 km of underground piping. It was one of the largest projects of its kind in North America, and an integral component of UBC’s Climate Action Plan. The primary energy source for this new system is the Campus Energy Centre (#10 on map), a state‑of‑the‑art hot water boiler facility capable of meeting all of UBC’s heating requirements. The new system has reduced thermal energy use by 24 per cent, cut GHG emissions by more than 22 per cent, and saved $5.5 million annually in operational and energy costs. The ADES also offers opportunities for researchers, students, staff and industry partners to collaborate in exploring and developing green technologies in areas such as geothermal energy, biomass gasification, ocean thermal energy, solar energy and waste‑heat recovery.