Colorado State University- Pueblo’s facilities management department aims to make the campus green.
According to Deborah Proctor, project planner for facilities management, energy efficient projects are being implemented throughout campus to help make the university sustainable.
The university has a 1.2 megawatt solar photovoltaic system located east side of campus, which helps generate energy efficiently.
“The solar array produces 10 percent of the energy the campus uses. The electricity bill would be significantly more expensive if it wasn’t for the solar array,” Proctor said.
A smaller 6.12 kilowatt solar photovoltaic system is also located outside of the technology building.
Proctor explained that the solar panels located outside the technology building do not produce enough energy for the whole building, but it does save the university money.
A wind turbine will be installed on campus sometime in the future. The turbine will also be located east side of campus and generate 10 kilowatts of power.
Even the greenery on campus helps with the universities electricity bill.
The asphalt, parking lots, roadways, concrete surfaces and buildings create a heat-island effect, according to Proctor.
Proctor goes on to explain that if the grass was removed and replaced by xeriscaping or concrete, the buildings on campus would have a much harder time sustaining a cool temperature inside. The result would be a higher electricity bill.
“The amount we spend to maintain the grass actually saves us money on the electricity bill in the long run,” Proctor stated.
The facilities team also installs light colored gravel and reflective roofing on buildings to maintain cooler temperatures inside.
“It costs us more money to cool a building than to heat a building, so it’s important to reflect the sun as much as possible. The roofs are also insulated; one other layer of keeping the heat away from the buildings,” Proctor said.
The art and music building will be the first to have a green roof, which will provide shade and moderate temperatures.
Proctor also noted that the buildings on campus use energy efficient light bulbs and motion detecting light sensors. The vending machines have been equipped with motion detectors in an effort to conserve energy throughout the campus.
Students can call the facilities management department at (719)549-2211 for any information regarding energy conservation efforts on campus.