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The Utilities section of Energy and Sustainability operates the University energy infrastructure system on a 24 hour, 365 day per year basis.  Production facilities include a combined heat and power facility which provides both the steam for heat and electricity for campus.  All of the water for campus is provided by a university owned potable water filtration plant.  Electricity from the local utility is fed through a university owned electric substation. Utilities is also responsible for all of the distribution and collection systems located on campus including steam, chilled water, electricity, potable water and waste water. 

Utilities serves over 300 buildings and nearly 14 million square feet on central campus. About 40% are part of the State University of New York statutory contract colleges, 2-3% are federal and private research facilities, and the balance are part of the endowed Cornell campus.

We at Cornell have worked hard to make our systems one of the "homes of best practices" within the district energy industry. Our systems work together to provide the utility needs of campus in a highly efficient manner.  The systems have garnered numerous awards including the prestigious System of the Year award from the International District Energy Association (IDEA). 

The Utilities Vision statement is:

"We will be the leader in our industry by involving and recognizing every co-worker in the most innovative solutions to produce, manage, and distribute utility services in a world class university." 

District Energy and Combined Heat and Power System

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Efficient, environmentally responsible, and cost-effective...learn more about Cornell's combined heat and power systems!

Customer Support

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Questions about billing, projects, or other Utilities operations? Start here!



Ithaca is...cold! But Cornell buildings aren't! Our combined heat and power system is ivy league.


Pipes at Lake Source Cooling Heat Exchange Facility

Big Red chills with a world-class, history-making chilled water system.


Electric Lines

Even the electric grid is smart at Cornell!


Hydrant and equipment

Drink it, experiment with it, play in it - Utilties serves it up and drains it away...