June Climate Leader: Jesse Warren

photo credit: Jane Centofante

photo credit: Jane Centofante

Jesse Warren, PE is the Sustainability Program Manager for Buildings & Operations at the University of Virginia.  Jesse is responsible for the University’s electric demand response, building sustainability & recycling programs.  He leads a team of energy engineers who identify and implement energy efficiency, renewable energy and retro-commissioning projects across Grounds.  Jesse leads UVA Recycling and is also the vice-chair of the Albemarle County Solid Waste Alternatives Advisory Committee.

1.      How did you get involved and passionate about the environment?

As an engineer, I was trained in how to design new things.  Early on I realized that I prefer designs with the minimum environmental impact.  A successful design uses the minimum resources necessary to do the job.

2. What are you hopeful about right now?

In the absence of federal leadership, we are starting to see serious steps toward climate action from our state and local governments.

3. In your opinion, what is one thing that is holding the state or local community back from greater progress?

Climate change denial.  If folks have any doubt that climate change is caused by human actions, I am happy to introduce them to some very knowledgeable climate researchers.

4. What is a climate action personally or professionally that you are proud of?

At work, my team is responsible for UVA’s Delta Force energy efficiency program.  This initiative is part of the reason the University’s carbon emissions are down about 12% since 2009.

5. What is one thing folks can do today to help reduce climate pollution?

Explore alternative transportation.  Whether its walking, biking or taking the trolley; changing up your commute is a great way to refresh your morning routine.

6. This is challenging work!  What is your favorite way to recharge and rejuvenate?

If I am not out with my family, then you can probably find me riding my bike or motorcycle around Albemarle County. 


Teri Kent