EPA Releases Top 30 Green Power Usage List
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released the top 30 college and university Green Power Partners, as ranked by green power use. The University of California, Arizona State University and the University of Iowa are the top three ranked (respectively) higher education institutions for their usage of green power. Ten institutions on the list purchase green power in an amount equal to or exceeding 100 percent of their institution-wide electricity use.
MIT Initiates the Energy Systems Research Center
Working with energy partners, the new research consortium, the Future Energy Systems Center, aims to address the climate crisis and the role energy systems can play in solving it. The center investigates the emerging technology, policy, demographics and economics reshaping the landscape of energy supply and demand, then conducts integrative analysis of the entire energy system.
American U Removes Smokestacks
During winter break, two 100-foot smokestacks at American University that were part of the AU campus skyline for more than 60 years were removed. This is the final step in the university’s conversion to a low-temperature hot water heating system that is projected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 40 percent.
U Maine Presque Isle to Install 377KW Photovoltaic Array
Currently under construction is a 377-kilowatt, grid-connected solar array that once completed is estimated to save the university about $42,000 in electricity costs per year. A unique aspect of the modules being used is that they are bifacial panels, meaning the back sides of the panels capture reflected sunlight from the ground, which results in about an 8 percent increase in energy generated.
London School Economics Becomes Carbon Neutral Verified
(U.K.) The London School of Economics and Political Science recently announced carbon neutrality that was independently verified for the academic year 2020/21, for all its measured emissions. This was accomplished by a range of energy efficiency, and by procuring all the electricity from 100 percent renewable sources since 2009.
Iowa State U Approves 900 KW Solar Farm
The Iowa board of regents recently approved a motion to proceed with the development of a 900-kilowatt solar farm. Under the public-private partnership, Iowa State will receive renewable energy credits generated by the solar farm, which will offset a portion of the university’s annual carbon emissions.
U Kentucky to Purchase 55 MW of Solar Power
The university recently entered into an agreement with a regional utility company to purchase 44 percent of the power output of a 125-megawatt solar facility. This power purchase is estimated to cover approximately one-third of the electricity consumed by campus.
Santa Clara U Receives $5M Donation for Photovoltaic Systems
A couple recently donated $10 million to the university for a new STEM campus, half of which will fund photovoltaic systems in multiple campus locations over the next few years. The combined systems are anticipated to generate 1.7 megawatts of renewable energy each year when completed.
Columbia U Pledges Fossil Free Buildings
The university announced recently that it will no longer install new fossil fuel connections in any new construction, refresh or renovation projects. To support this transition, the university will evaluate how to fully electrify the campus by replacing the onsite combustion of fossil fuels with clean, renewable energy sources.
Oberlin College Secures $80M in Certified Climate Bonds for Geothermal Project
Investors poured $80 million into a Certified Climate Bond offering for a geothermal infrastructure project on Oberlin's campus. The four-year sustainable infrastructure project will convert buildings throughout Oberlin’s campus to geothermal heating and cooling, drawing on 1,100 wells that harness the earth’s natural underground temperatures to replace Oberlin’s current heat source, natural gas.
Colorado State U Pueblo Goes 100% Solar-Electric
In mid-August, the university announced that all university buildings were being powered by energy from the sun. This was made possible through a power purchase agreement that included the installation of a 23-acre solar array on the north side of campus and a rechargeable battery system.
Washtenaw CC to Source 100% Renewable Energy
The community college recently announced a green power partnership with its electric utility. The partnership commits the college to an escalating enrollment that will begin in 2023 and increase annually with the college sourcing 100 percent of its electric power needs through clean energy by 2029.