Indiana U Students’ Energy Contest Website Wins Int'l Competition
Two Indiana University School of Informatics graduates took a first-place award at the Imagine Cup finals, an international competition sponsored by Microsoft Corp., for their residence hall energy reduction competition website. The theme of this year's Imagine Cup was the environment; specifically, participants were encouraged to "imagine a world where technology enables a sustainable environment." The pair’s website design won against 200,000 other entrants.
Sault College Installs 32 kW Wind Turbine on Campus
Sault College (ON) has constructed a 32 kW wind energy turbine on its campus. The turbine features 9-meter blades, a low noise level, and an aerodynamic blade design that was optimized for the highest annual production in areas with average winds of 3 – 6 meters per second.
Tufts U Joins Clean Energy Development Program
Tufts University has signed an agreement with the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MTC) to join “Clean Energy Choice-On Campus,” a green energy development program coordinated by MTC, a Massachusetts development agency for renewable energy. For every dollar donated by individual members of the Tufts community, MTC will put aside a matching grant of $2. MTC will divide the matching funds three ways — one-third will be available to Tufts to use for future alternative energy sources on campus like solar panels and wind turbines, one-third will be put into a fund for renewable energy programs in the city, and the remaining funds will go into an account administered by MTC for green energy projects in low-income communities across the state. The original contributions from Tufts will be used to purchase renewable energy credits.
U Maryland Baltimore Reduces Energy Load by 20 M kWh in 2 Years
The University of Maryland Baltimore has announced that it reduced its electricity load by more than 20 million kWh in two years as a result of its participation in Comverge, Inc's PJM (Pennsylvania-New Jersey-Maryland) Demand Response Programs, which helped UMB to reduce its peak demand and overall consumption. Examples of the strategies that UMB and Comverge are implementing include: using an existing 20,000 ton-hour/2,000-ton output thermal storage system to shift air conditioning load from daytime on-peak operation to night-time off-peak operation; remotely controlling all public area lighting and turning off all non-essential lighting loads during periods of high demand; and putting a portion of the campus chilled water production on a "current limiting" mode for short 30-minute periods.
U North Alabama to Reduce Energy Use
The University of North Alabama has undertaken a project designed to reduce the University's environmental impact and utility costs. UNA plans to replace windows and doors in older buildings, re-insulate heating and cooling ducts, and install motion-sensitive lighting where appropriate.
Williams College Installs 26 kW Solar Array
Williams College (MA) has installed a 26.88 kW photovoltaic array on the college's new library shelving facility. The array is part of Williams College's campaign for greener buildings. The solar modules used in the project were built in Massachusetts.
Emory U Installs Solar PV Array
Emory University (GA) has installed a 1 kW solar photovoltaic system on the roof of a job-site trailer on campus. The solar panels help power the construction of Emory’s New Psychology Building, and will generate an estimated average of 112 kWh per month of electricity. The solar system was supplied by Southern Energy Solutions.
Suffolk U Joins Massachusetts Clean Energy Program
Suffolk University has joined the "Clean Energy Choice-On Campus Program," administered by the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative. Through the program, Suffolk will help grow the demand for alternatives to fossil fuel-generated electricity, earn funds for on-site renewable energy projects at Suffolk, and generate a double-matching grant from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative to provide clean energy funds for the City of Boston and low income communities throughout Massachusetts.
UC San Francisco Partners to Install a 250 kW Solar System
The University of California, San Francisco has partnered with MMA Renewable Ventures and Wells Fargo to install a solar energy system in San Francisco that will provide renewable power to UCSF’s Mission Bay campus. MMA Renewable Ventures will own and operate the 250 kW system through a long-term Power Purchase Agreement with UCSF. MMA Renewable Ventures will also arrange equity investment for projects through its Solar Fund III, a financing commitment with Wells Fargo to fund 10-15 MW of solar energy projects nationwide. This agreement allows UCSF to receive power from renewable energy sources without having to pay the upfront installation costs or ongoing maintenance expenses.
Allegheny College Pilots Energy Efficiency Program
Allegheny College (PA), one of several American College and University Presidents' Climate Commitment signatories to launch pilot projects through the Clinton Climate Initiative's Energy Efficiency Building Retrofit Program, has selected Siemens Building Technologies to audit the energy use of a variety of systems throughout the campus infrastructure. Following the initial audit, Siemens will use the data to prepare a formal presentation that outlines what facility improvement measures will deliver the best energy efficiency gains. The energy savings figure produced from the audit will provide the basis for the development of a performance contract that guarantees the savings and provides the financial means to pay for the retrofits.
Appalachian State U Installs Solar Array on Campus
Appalachian State University (NC) has installed a 4 kW photovoltaic system on campus. Electricity from the system will be sold onto the grid and additional revenue will come from selling the associated Green-Power credits. The project was funded by a $5 per semester student fee called the Renewable Energy Initiative that was begun in 2005 to support renewable energy initiatives on campus.
Appalachian State U to Install Wind Turbine
The Appalachian State University (NC) Renewable Energy Initiative has announced plans to install a 100kW community-scale wind turbine on campus. The turbine proposed for the project will stand 115 feet tall, will have a blade diameter of 66 feet, and is expected to produce 150,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually. The organizers do not yet have a timeline for installation.
Oklahoma State U Completes Energy Upgrades
The Oklahoma State University Center for Veterinary Health Sciences has completed energy efficiency upgrades to five buildings that are expected to realize approximately $9 million in energy savings over the course of a 20-year performance contract with Johnson Controls, Inc. Based on a utility bill comparison, the project has already delivered more than $154,000 in operational savings during the installation period. The savings are a result of upgrades that range from glazing windows and installing lighting controls to retrofitting the buildings’ plumbing and air flow systems. Work began on the project in September 2006.
Purdue U Installs Energy Efficient Supercomputer
Purdue University (IN) has installed a new supercomputer designed to use up to 80 percent less energy and be more effective in some situations. The system is designed for high performance computing used in research supercomputers, and its processors draw 600 milliwatts of power each, compared to 25,000 milliwatts in standard supercomputers.
U Arizona Uses Ice to Cool Buildings
The University of Arizona has created the University Thermal Ice Storage Project, an award-winning chilled water production and distribution system that spends the evening and early morning hours freezing water that is then used to cool buildings across the main campus and at the Arizona Health Sciences Center. The system involves the use of water chillers, cooling towers, pumps and pipes that snake around the campus through underground pipes that connect the plants. The project can produce more than 900 tons of ice per hour and the pipes feed the melting ice, or cooled water, to campus buildings. The process moves the bulk of the UA’s electrical load from the hot daytime hours to the cooler nighttime hours. UA recently received the Energy Efficiency Leader in Education Award from Trane for being one of a few institutions to have such a project up and running. And, just recently, the UA partnered with the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers’ Tucson chapter to begin teaching engineering students about chilled water technology and other heating and cooling processes.
Carroll College to Complete Energy Efficiency Renovations
Carroll College (WI) has announced plans to complete several upgrades to make the campus more energy efficient. Carroll will replace three boilers, upgrade lighting and plumbing fixtures and controls, and install a backup propane fuel system. The College expects to save enough money in energy bills to break even on the project in 15 years.
Rutgers to Construct Major Solar Farm
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey Board of Governors has approved the construction of a solar energy facility that will generate approximately 10 percent of the electrical demand of the Livingston campus. Nearly half of the cost of the project will be subsidized by a rebate through the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities’ Clean Energy Program. In addition, Rutgers plans to sell Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) generated from the photovoltaic system. The University expects to recoup its investment within seven years. By the end of the 15-year incentive program, the university anticipates that it will net a return of $6.6 million over its initial investment. The seven-acre facility will be the largest solar energy project in New Jersey. It is expected to begin operation in spring 2009.
Arizona State U Plans Major Solar Installation
Arizona State University recently announced plans to install solar panels on up to 330,000 square feet of rooftop space. Three companies have been hired by the University to install the panels, which could eventually produce more than 20 percent of ASU's energy needs. The university will purchase the electricity generated from the panels at a fixed rate that is slightly lower than what it is now paying for power from Arizona Public Service Co. In the first phase of the project, approximately 2 megawatts of solar panels will be installed on 135,000 square feet of rooftop space by the end of the year.
Brunswick CC Students Convert Algae Oil to Biodiesel
A group of Brunswick Community College (NC) students from the Aquaculture and Biotechnology programs have begun working on a project to extract oil from algae and convert it into biodiesel. BCC hopes that the new fuel will soon be used to power campus tractors.
Colorado College Installs 25 kW Solar Array
Colorado College has installed a 25 kW solar array on campus. The new array, which is situated on the south-facing roof of a college-owned apartment building, produces enough energy to power the equivalent of one of the campus' language-theme residential houses. The College has created a webpage to view and track the amount of power produced by the panels.
U New Mexico Receives EPA Energy Award
The University of New Mexico has won the Energy Star Combined Heat and Power (CHP) award from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for reducing its energy use by 20 percent. EPA recognized the University for its natural gas-fired CHP system at the Ford Utilities Center. Part of a major energy infrastructure upgrade project, the CHP system supplies the campus with roughly one-third of its total electricity demand and produces steam to help meet the space heating, space cooling, and domestic hot water production needs of more than 25,000 students, staff, and faculty. The CHP system runs with an operating efficiency of almost 65 percent and requires 20 percent less fuel than typical alternatives.
SUNY-Ulster Begins Energy Conservation Project
The State University of New York at Ulster recently began an upgrade to its campus facilities which will be funded through expected energy savings. This project will simultaneously reduce utility, operating and maintenance costs, and greenhouse gas emissions. Upgrade activities will include retrofitting older, less energy efficient equipment on campus with state-of-the-art energy using equipment. The project will also address water conservation and a renewable energy system in the form of a solar hot water heating system. SUNY Ulster is partnering with Johnson Controls to assist in the energy conservation upgrade to its campus.
U British Columbia Launches Energy Monitoring Project
The University of British Columbia has launched an initiative to track energy usage and greenhouse gas emissions in five campus buildings. The project will track electricity, steam, and water consumption in the buildings using software and power meters, and the results can be seen in real-time at website hosted by Small Energy Group, UBC's partner in the project. In a related project, a UBC Ph.D. candidate will investigate how occupants in two of the five buildings can use this real-time energy data to reduce energy consumption and increase comfort.
Florida Gulf Coast U to be 100% Solar
Legislatures in Florida have allocated $8.5 million to fund the installation of a solar farm on 16 acres of the Florida Gulf Coast University campus. The project, which awaits approval by the Governor, has an expected completion date of summer 2009. If successful, the solar farm, including the panels purchased with private donations, would generate 2 megawatts per day, enough to provide 100 percent of FGCU's energy needs. Governor Charlie Crist is expected to approve the plan.
Northland College Students Install Solar Panels on Campus
The Northland College (WI) Photovoltaic Installation class recently installed a solar electric system at the home of the Northland College President. The students installed twelve 175 watt solar panels mounted on a pole. The array of panels is attached to a sun-watt tracking system, a mechanism that automatically rotates the panels from east to west as well as tilts them up and down to follow the sun through the course of the day. Together, the panels will produce about 3,300 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. The President is funding the project with her personal finances with help from renewable energy grants provided by the State of Wisconsin.
U Illinois to Cut Energy Use by 10%
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign recently established a goal to cut energy use in existing buildings by 10 percent in three years and reach 1990 levels within five years. The reduction is expected to save the equivalent of 300 million kilowatt-hours of energy, and would be achieved by controlling growth, developing incentives to reduce usage, encouraging the campus community to be more energy conscious and stimulating investment in energy-saving measures.
Western Washington U to Install Rooftop Solar Panels
Western Washington University recently announced plans to install 12 solar panels on the roof of the Viking Student Union. The panels will generate an estimated 2,000 kilowatt hours of electricity per year. Along with the panels, WWU plans to install an educational kiosk to explain the project and show the amount of power the solar panels are generating. The project is an initiative of the WWU Students for Renewable Energy, an Associated Student club that began organizing and planning for the solar panels in 2006.
Notre Dame Computer Processors to Heat City Greenhouse
University of Notre Dame’s (IN) Center for Research Computing and the City of South Bend have announced plans to relocate a cluster of high performance computer servers to the city's desert plant greenhouse. The relocation of the servers will substantially lower the cooling expenditures associated with high performance computing on the University’s campus. In turn, the heat associated with the computer cluster now provides a heating infrastructure for the Greenhouses at a cost much lower than the city would pay for natural gas.
1.2 MW Solar Project Completed at East Los Angeles College
The Los Angeles Community College District (CA) recently completed a 1.2 MW solar power project at East Los Angeles College. The $9 million project, which will provide almost half of the college’s daytime power needs, is part of the District’s Renewable Energy Plan, which aims to take all nine of its colleges "off the grid.". The solar panels are located atop a seven large-scale carports.
SUNY Ulster to Launch Energy Conservation Project
The State University of New York at Ulster recently announced that it will undergo a $2.6 million energy conservation upgrade. The upgrade is expected to reduce the college’s energy use by almost 1.3 million kWh per year. Upgrades include retrofitting older, less energy efficient equipment with state-of-the-art energy using equipment. The project will also address water conservation and a renewable energy system in the form of a solar water heating system. The cost of the project is expected to be funded through energy savings over a 15 year period.
Caltech Installs 230kW Solar Facility
California Institute of Technology recently began installing a 230 kW solar array on top of one of its parking structures. Caltech officials believe that the new array will be the largest solar-energy facility in the city of Pasadena. The project will be financed and operated through a Power Purchase Agreement between the campus and Solar Power Partners. The City of Pasadena and Pasadena Water and Power have worked closely with Caltech to create the facility, and construction is expected to finish in August 2008.
Columbia U Trades Incandescent Bulbs for CFLs
The Columbia University (NY) Environmental Law Society recently launched the Student Lightbulb Brigade Project, an initiative that aims to reduce the collective carbon footprint of the Columbia University community by offering compact fluorescent light bulbs for the less efficient incandescent bulbs for free. The students hope to exchange 50,000 bulbs.
Point Loma Nazarene U to Build 450 KW Solar Array
Point Loma Nazarene University (CA) recently announced its plans to build a 450 kW solar energy system on its campus. The photovoltaic system is projected to produce 80 percent of the peak energy for six major PLNU buildings. Construction is set to begin in July of 2008. PLNU was able to finance the system through a Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) provided by Solar Power Partners, Inc. (SPP). Under the PPA, SPP will own the solar system for 20 years and sell the clean energy generated by the system to PLNU at a cost below present utility rates. PLNU has no upfront capital costs for the system and will have fixed electricity rates for 20 years.
U Utah Unveils New Cogeneration Steam System
The University of Utah recently unveiled a new cogeneration steam system, which will supply 5 to 10 percent of the University's electricity needs and produce heat for part of the campus. The new system is estimated to save 63,000 tons of carbon dioxide emissions from going into the atmosphere per year.
Purdue U to Green 3 Buildings, Purchases Green Vehicles
Three Purdue University (IN) buildings have recently been selected for Qualified Energy Savings upgrades as part of an Indiana legislative program. The upgrades will improve the energy efficiency on campus by replacing air handling units, installing more efficient toilets and urinals, and retrofitting kitchen and lavatory faucets with aerators to reduce water consumption. Purdue officials say that the energy savings from the upgrades will translate into a 3.3 percent annual reduction in overall carbon dioxide emissions from the campus utility plant. Additionally, Purdue recently purchased two hybrid vehicles and a mid-sized travel bus that can run on B20 fuel. With the addition of the two new cars, Purdue increased its hybrid fleet to four vehicles.
St. Cloud State U Unveils Biofuels Bus
St. Cloud State University (MN) recently unveiled a bus powered by 80 percent recycled vegetable oil and 20 percent diesel fuel. The Husky Fried Ride uses approximately 150 gallons of vegetable oil per week while classes are in session, and is operated by the city bus system on the university park-and-ride routes. The vegetable oil used in the Husky Fried Ride is obtained from the university deep fryers.
U Mary Washington Campaign Saves Energy
A University of Mary Washington (VA) student-led environmental campaign has saved an estimated 197 metric tons of carbon dioxide from going into the atmosphere as a result of a shift in energy-saving attitudes and behaviors on campus. Results of a survey showed that students wasted the most energy when taking long showers, leaving computer equipment on when not in use, and running fans and air conditioning units when no one was in the room. The University's energy services company, NORESCO, then designed and provided training for resident assistants to educate others about changing these three specific behaviors. Resident assistants then launched a campaign to change attitudes and behaviors by talking with their residents, modeling the behaviors, and posting flyers to remind students to conserve energy, among other activities. NORESCO plans to expand the program to other colleges and universities.
U Texas Austin Requires Students to Use Fluorescent Bulbs in Dorms
University of Texas at Austin recently announced that starting Fall semester 2008, students will be required to use fluorescent bulbs instead of incandescent bulbs. As part of this effort, the Division of Housing and Food Services has been in the process of replacing light fixtures with more energy efficient fluorescent models, replacing incandescent bulbs with more efficient fluorescent bulbs, and installing motion detector light switches where applicable. The University will also provide recycling boxes at center desks for students to dispose of burnt out fluorescent bulbs.
MIT Buildings To Undergo Energy Conservation Improvements
Several Massachusetts Institute of Technology buildings will undergo a variety of basic energy conservation improvements in the next few months. Pilot projects include retrofitting light bulbs and fixtures, adding and adjusting motion sensors, monitoring buildings to gauge energy use, and automating fume hood controls. The projects have been made possible by $500,000 in seed funding from the Executive Vice President, the Department of Finance, and the Department of Facilities. Additionally, students in a recent Sloan School of Management course partnered with the Department of Facilities to identify an additional $14 million of potential investments with a three-year return. These include a major revamping of the heating system in one building to include heat recovery; continuous building commissioning that assesses and optimizes building energy systems in real time; and strategic maintenance to improve energy efficiency in existing ventilation systems.
U British Columbia Students Market Energy Conservation
A University of British Columbia Sauder School of Business team of students recently won a competition to create a marketing plan using new technologies and other innovative practices to help universities and colleges reduce energy consumption. The group of students surveyed nearly 100 students and found that 70 percent of students are unaware that leaving an appliance such as an unused cell phone charger plugged into the wall consumes energy, and 60 percent of students were unaware of the benefits of energy-efficient compact florescent light bulbs. The team's marketing plan included developing an application that posts daily conservation tips on Facebook and on UBC’s Web Course Tools website, where students download assignments and other class content. They also recommended selling CFLs and other energy-efficient household items in booths in UBC’s Student Union Building, and hosting an energy conservation competition in the residence halls.
Borough of Manhattan CC Increases Energy Efficiency
The Borough of Manhattan Community College of the City University of New York and the Green Buildings Collaborative of state agencies recently announced a joint effort to help increase green and energy efficiency measures at a BMCC’s building in Lower Manhattan. The effort includes a feasibility assessment for potential green and energy efficiency upgrades to the 450,000-square foot, eight-story building’s mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems as well as its facade. It also provides assistance in exploring potential alternative energy generation such as solar panel arrays and wind turbines.
UC San Diego To Install 7.4 MW of Renewable Energy
The University of California, San Diego recently announced plans to build a 1 MW photovoltaic array on campus, to purchase up to 3 MW of electric power produced by Southern California wind farms, and to produce 2.4 MW from fuel cells powered by methane captured from a sewage treatment plant. The University also hopes to install an additional 1 MW photovoltaic array within the next year. The arrays will be built atop campus buildings and parking structures. Once complete, the 7.4 MW of renewable energy are expected to meet 10 - 15 percent of the campus's annual electrical needs. The projects are part of UCSD's effort to become the "Greenest University in the Nation.","1
Burlington College Joins Energy Efficiency Project
Burlington College (VT) recently joined an energy-efficiency project composed of the Association of Vermont Independent Colleges. The goals of the Burlington College part of the project are to retrofit existing older buildings on campus to significantly improve energy efficiency, and to carry out a site analysis and design of a new LEED-certified building. The college also plans to replace its four boilers with two Energy Star-rated boilers, three 50-gallon hot water tanks with a 200-gallon gas hot water tank, 104 fluorescent light fixtures with more energy-efficient models, and 70 of the 102 windows on campus buildings. The school said it will also carry out an architectural study on constructing a LEED-certified, climate-specific and site-specific building using energy-efficient construction materials. The study will explore incorporating passive solar and wind energy, as well as natural day-lighting.
Campuses Participate in Fossil Fools Day
Campuses from the U.S. and Canada participated in Fossil Fools Day events on April 1. Fossil Fools Day, organized by the Energy Action Coalition, brings together thousands of young people from around the world for a global day of action demonstrating the youth commitment to stop climate change. The University of Kentucky, Wilfrid Laurier University (ON), Clark University (MA), and others participated in the day of action through events such as raising a mock wind turbine on top of a pile of coal, blockading a Shell Gas Station, and hosting a wind turbine versus coal plant boxing match.
Humboldt State U to Install 2 Solar Projects
Humboldt State University’s (CA) student-initiated Humboldt Energy Independence Fund Committee has granted $100,000 for two pilot projects: a photovoltaic system for the roof of the Old Music Building and new equipment to complete a Solar Radiation Monitoring Station. The photovoltaic system was awarded $95,000 and will include two student contests in the fall to create an art display and interpretive signage explaining the installation’s benefits. The second project was awarded $5,000 toward completion of the SoRMS. Students have been working with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to create a database for the solar radiation energy of California’s North Coast. Data collected by the project will be useful for determining solar array sizes, battery storage requirements and carbon dioxide emission offsets. The information will be accessible to anyone via the laboratory’s website. Both projects are scheduled to be completed by the end of the fall 2008 semester. The fund is financed by a self-imposed fee of $10 per student per semester.
Louisiana State U Converts Local Cooking Oil to Biodiesel
Louisiana State University recently started converting its cafeteria cooking oil into biodiesel. The campus will use cooking oil from an on-campus dining facility to make 50-gallon batches of biodiesel two times per week. The product will be used in tractors, heavy equipment, compost grinders, and trucks at one of the LSU AgCenter's Central Research Station. LSU plans to organize community workshops for those who want to learn how to make biodiesel using the same process.
Turtle Mountain CC Installs Wind Turbine
Turtle Mountain Community College (ND) has begun the installation of a 600 kilowatt on-campus wind turbine. When the wind turbine runs at full capacity, it will provide 90 percent of TMCC's electricity usage. The turbine is scheduled to be complete and on the grid by late April 2008.
Medical U of South Carolina Installs Geothermal System
The Medical University of South Carolina recently installed a geothermal system into the Anderson House, a campus administration building that houses the South Carolina College of Pharmacy's administration. The building is the first on campus to utilize a closed loop geothermal heat pump.
Auburn U Partners with City to Produce Biodiesel
Auburn University (AL) recently partnered with the city of Gadsden and Gadsden Waterworks and Sewer Board to convert cooking oil into biodiesel fuel. Auburn University plans to document the cost and the conversion process in order to provide other cities with the information.
Cape Cod CC Awarded Wind Turbine Grant
Cape Cod Community College (MA) has received a $2.4 million grant to install a 600 kW wind turbine. The grant will also allow CCCC to pay a fixed price per kilowatt hour for turbine-generated electricity that will be paid to the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, the grant provider. The savings CCCC sees will be shared with MTC’s Low Income Energy Assistance Network. The LEAN program works with other energy programs and provides benefits to low-income populations in the area including on-site housing improvements for energy efficiency.