Hartwick College, NY Energy Plan

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Hartwick College, NY, US

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Type: Policy

Status: Ongoing

Source File: http://www.hartwick.edu/x434.xml


The College recently commissioned a Campus Master Energy Plan study funded 50% by Aramark and 50% through NYSERDA. Many of the recommendations have been implemented at the operations level while others have been incorporated into capital projects. The balance of the options were too costly for the College to commit to at this time and have been added to the Deferred Maintenance List.

Campus Energy Conservation
A concerted effort is underway to educate the campus population of the need for, and benefits derived from, a vigorous and ongoing conservation drive; Hartwick uses approximately 9 million kWh's annually (The Pine Lake Environmental Campus uses approximately 150,000 kWh's annually).

In 2005-06, students and faculty developed an "adopt-a-room" program as a vehicle for encouraging energy conservation in a semi-competitive venue. While the spirit of the move is laudable we had at that time only one building on campus THAT was individually metered, thus giving no opportunity to measure the success of the initiative. Incorporated into the framework of the Smith Hall Renovation project was the installation of sub-meters. This feature was also installed during the construction of the new Concessions Building and will be incorporated campus-wide as a part of any renovation project or new building program.

Renewable and Efficient Power On Campus
As recently as spring 2006 an energy caucus was held on campus to examine the viability of placing wind turbines at the top of the campus. Studies conducted have concluded that there is insufficient air movement for this project to be feasible. We do have several building locations that would support installation of Photovoltaic Panels to utilize solar power, but at this time the cost is prohibitive.

In 2005 a local company spent several months looking at the potential to power the College utilizing wood chips. Once again the cost was prohibitive as the technology, as designed, works best through the utilization of an existing central heating plant (which Hartwick does not have).

100% efficient generation of campus power would entail a considerable amount of capital investment on the College's part. With many of the boilers in need of replacement, and no central heat plant, current options are severely limited. As part of the College's commitment to sustainability we are always looking at these options for any and all future construction projects.

Hartwick College has investigated various options for buying/investing in renewable energy or energy credits/certificates. With financial support from NY State, Hartwick has invested in solar renewable energy technologies at the Pine Lake Environmental Campus and we have conducted studies of what buildings on campus could support solar panels.

We have acquired quotes from companies that offer energy credits off-setting greenhouse gas emissions and are now examining campus-wide pricing. Under guidance from the College's students, staff, and faculty, and the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE), we have decided to invest in on-property green energy production, energy efficiency initiatives, and renewable energy certificates (RECs); the Pine Lake Environmental Campus will be the first component of Hartwick to go completely "green" via RECs.

Some campus energy initiatives include:

  • alternative roofing materials and low energy absorbancy roofing materials/colors
  • sleep monitors on equipment
  • water-saving urinals and toilets
  • low-flow shower heads
  • front load washers in most dorms
  • water-saving sinks
  • energy-efficient lighting (motion sensor)
  • compact florescent bulbs
  • computer assisted energy monitoring across campus via the Internet
  • use of energy efficient replacement windows in rehabilitated buildings and use of recycled building materials for outdoor walkways/steps.