I always figure it’s fair to give credit where credit is due, so props to the University of Maryland for doing millions of dollars worth in energy efficiency overhauls on three more campus buildings and putting solar panels on Cole Field House and The Diner. Obviously it’s a big campus, but this is another solid step in the right direction. I also can’t help but note that the university is paying for these improvements with through a state loan program, kind of like what UMD for Clean Energy is pushing for in College Park.
“Construction will begin on three more buildings this semester, as a part of a campus-wide energy project that will ultimately cut annual carbon emissions by about 4,100 tons and save the university about $1.7 million per year.
The $20 million Energy Performance Contract calls for investments in energy-efficient lighting, water conservation and the installation of renewable power sources like solar panels for nine buildings.”
“In accordance with the university’s plan to cut carbon emissions, eliminating its carbon footprint by 2050, the project is expected to save nearly 5 million kilowatt hours per year and reduce the university’s annual water usage by 2.5 million gallons.”
“Construction on all the buildings began in May and will continue through April 2011.
The project was funded by a state program that offers up $70 million in loans for government agencies to purchase construction equipment. The university plans to use some of the money it will save in energy costs to pay back the 10-year loan it received from the program, Corry said.”