University of Delaware

Energy Efficiency Fund

Lighting retrofit project reduces UD's carbon footprint, energy bill


8:53 a.m., Oct. 26, 2012--The University of Delaware has established the Revolving Energy Efficiency Fund to support energy efficiency projects across campus.

The first project funded by the Energy Efficiency Fund will replace lighting systems with new, energy efficient systems, undertaken by Facilities and Auxiliary Services and contractor Atlantic Energy Concepts.

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“Reducing our energy consumption and carbon footprint is an important element of our Path to Prominence,” said David Singleton, vice president of facilities and auxiliary services.  “The University’s Energy Efficiency Fund will be an important tool in meeting our goals.”

The Energy Efficiency Fund’s mandate is to reduce both the University’s carbon emissions and operating costs. Projects are identified by Facilities and Auxiliary Services engineering staff, targeting investments that have a payback horizon of fewer than five years.  Projects are paid for with the energy savings they generate.  As projects are completed and begin generating utility savings, the fund will support additional projects across campus. 

The lighting retrofit project

“Lighting is a significant contributor to the University’s carbon footprint, and to its energy bill,” said Anne-Marie Crossan, assistant director, Energy and Operations, and co-chair of the University’s Sustainability Task Force.  “Projects were selected based on addressing both criteria in a cost effective manner.” 

After evaluating several buildings as part of a comprehensive lighting and mechanical systems review, several locations were selected for upgrade: Older section of Du Pont Hall, Sharp Laboratory, Colburn Laboratory, Lammot du Pont Laboratory, Trabant University Center, Pencader Dining Hall, Clayton Hall, Carpenter Sports Building, and the Bob Carpenter Center.

Upon completion in January 2013, the project will save approximately 935,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity and 542 metric tons of carbon annually.

The new lighting systems are intended to meet national lighting standards per the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA), which address lighting levels and energy usage.  Target lighting levels were determined based on IESNA standards and the occupancy type (e.g. laboratory, office, dining room, corridor).

The newly installed lighting systems reduce energy use through a combination of controls for electricity usage and conversion from electricity to available, non-electric light sources.

Article by Tabitha Groh

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