Santa Margarita Catholic High School and the Diocese of Orange are committed to being responsible stewards of the earth God gave us. Both the school's Eagle Athletic Center and Academic Services Center were built with sustainable features to minimize their impact on the environment and demonstrate social responsibility. The school's Eagle Athletic Center
, which opened in the spring of 2010, earned LEED silver certification, the first in the both the Diocese of Orange and city of Rancho Santa Margarita with this designation.
What is LEED Certified?
In 2000, U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), established the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system as a way to define and measure “green buildings.” In school terms, LEED is like a report card for buildings, demonstrating to the community that a facility is built and/or operated in a way that supports the health and wellbeing of occupants and saves energy, resources, and money. The LEED rating system measures how well a building performs according to several metrics:
- energy savings
- water efficiency
- CO2, emissions reduction
- improved indoor environmental quality
- stewardship of resources
Participation in the LEED process is voluntary and demonstrates leadership, innovation and social responsibility.
Characteristics of a Green Building
- Conserves energy and natural resources
- Improves indoor air quality
- Removes toxic materials from places where children learn and play
- Utilizes daylight to reduce energy consumption
- Uses green cleaning practices
- Decreases the burden on municipal water and waste water treatment
- Encourages waste management efforts to benefit the local community and region
- Conserves fresh drinking water and helps manage storm water runoff
- Encourages recycling
- Promotes habitat protection
- Reduces demand on local landfills
Green Buildings – The SMCHS Eagle Athletic Center and Academic Services Center
The Eagle Athletic Center earned a silver-level LEED rating, the second highest level achievable, from the U.S. Green Building Council. The Eagle Athletic Center is the first building in Rancho Santa Margarita and in the Diocese of Orange to receive LEED accreditation. The Academic Services Center is in the process of receiving LEED certification.