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The ACUPCC Implementer
Second Nature

Dear ACUPCC Network,

It has been a busy semester of sustainability activities. Last month many of you attended the AASHE 2012 Conference and participated in Campus Sustainability Day activities. This week the ACUPCC Southeast Regional Symposium will be held at Agnes Scott College. We hope that these events allow you to learn from your peers and also provide you with opportunities to highlight your campus' sustainability efforts. REMINDER: the next reporting deadline is January 15, 2013 - please refer to the Reporting System for your reporting schedule and to request an extension if needed. As always, the ACUPCC Support Staff is available to answer your questions and provide support. This month marks the 50th issue of the Implementer, and to celebrate we are focusing on financing. The timing bodes well as the Sustainable Endowments Institute has just released Greening the Bottom Line 2012, an update on campus green revolving funds (GRF), and their Green Investment Tracking System (GRITS), an online tool that allows institutions to track and manage their GRF projects. Below we hear from Lane Community College on their Energy Carryover Fund; how the University of Vermont financed a Comprehensive Campus Renewable Energy Study; and get an update on Georgia Tech' s Carbon Neutral Energy Solutions Laboratory. Finally, Michele Madia, Director of Sustainability Financing & Strategy provides an update on Second Nature's work to identify and promote legislative opportunities to advance energy efficiency on campus

All the best,
Stephen Muzzy

Revolving Loan Fund at Lane Community College

By Jennifer Hayward, Sustainability Coordinator & Anna Scott, Energy Analyst, Lane Community College
Lane's Solar Station provides electricity for charging vehicles and power for nearby buildings

Lane Community College established a revolving loan fund in 2006, the only one of its kind at a community college, to pay for energy conservation and renewable energy projects through utility carryover. The fund, called the Energy Carryover Fund, realizes savings when current year electricity and natural gas expenditures are less than current year budget. Additionally, rebates and other incentives for energy-focused projects can be deposited into the Fund, helping to finance more projects in the future. The Fund is managed and implemented by Lane’s full time Energy Analyst, Anna Scott, and currently stands at $122,000. Annual budgets for electricity and natural gas are determined using an energy use index calculation for the baseline year of 2004-05 and the current year’s prices.  Money is transferred to the Carryover Fund if Lane is purchasing less energy per square foot because of efficiency, conservation, and on-site renewables than in the baseline year. Lane’s Energy Analyst plans the Fund’s projects in collaboration with faculty and students in its Energy Management and Renewable Energy Technology degree programs, Facilities Management and Planning staff, and college administrators. Read more...

Renewable Possibilities at the University of Vermont

By Mieko A. Ozeki, Sustainability Projects Coordinator, University of Vermont
Clean Energy Fund Intern-produced video of UVM's Renewable Energy Feasibility Study survey process

The University of Vermont’s Clean Energy Fund awarded up to $100,000 toward a Comprehensive Campus Renewable Energy Feasibility Study (CCREFS). The overarching goals of the CCREFS was to get recommendations for optimal renewable energy technology and site locations on the University’s main and south campus, and to involve students as much as possible in the process. The funding for the CCREFS project was primarily sourced from UVM’s Clean Energy Fund, a student green fund approved in 2008 by UVM’s Board of Trustees. The CEF is sustained by a self-imposed student fee of $10 per student per semester and generates an estimated $225,000 per year. Five UVM student interns were hired to observe, document, and analyze the CCREFS project. Three of the interns worked directly with the consultancy firm, as a technical team, to conduct field surveys of buildings, parking lots, and open fields on the University’s main and south campus. Two interns worked together as the media and outreach team. The media intern filmed, edited, and produced videos on the project and the outreach intern collected progress reports from the technical team and produced PR materials on the implementation of the project. Each of the five interns developed materials for their professional portfolios, helping them to reflect on their career paths and goals. Read more...

Building Georgia Tech’s Carbon Neutral Energy Solutions Laboratory

By Howard Wertheimer, Director, Capital Planning & Space Management, Georgia Institute of Technology
Rendition of Georgia Tech’s Carbon Neutral Energy Solutions Laboratory

Georgia Tech in the process of building the Carbon Neutral Energy Solutions (CNES) Laboratory, a 40,000 square foot facility intended to set a new standard for sustainable design for laboratory buildings. The building will be anchored by Georgia Tech’s Strategic Energy Institute and will house a variety of energy research programs requiring large scale (high-bay) and intermediates scale (mid-bay) capabilities. With a total budget of $24.6 million, the project was financed through a grant of $11.6 million awarded to the Georgia Tech Research Corporation from the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The balance of the project was financed through GT Facilities Inc., a 501c3 affiliate partner of the Georgia Institute of Technology. Read more...

Advocacy Update: Higher Education Leading the Nation to a Safe and Secure Energy Future

By Michele Madia, Director of Sustainability Financing & Strategy, Second Nature
Luther College generates one-third of the electrical power it consumes with a wind generator sited on the bluff overlooking the campus and city. Photo: Erik Hageness

Since releasing the Higher Education: Leading the Nation to a Safe and Secure Energy Future report that explores how the federal government can develop and enhance clean energy incentives and investments specifically for colleges and universities, Second Nature, the American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment (ACUPCC) and the National Association of College & University Business Officers (NACUBO) have met with higher education associations (HEA) and individual institutions to discuss the strategic importance of addressing energy issues for colleges and universities. Second Nature has also identified an opportunity in the Energy Efficient Commercial Buildings Deduction (Section 179D) that if extended to colleges and universities would allow a federal tax deduction for energy efficiency projects. Being able to include such a deduction in building construction or retrofit RFPs should lead to lower bids and would incentivize architects, engineers, and contractors to push the envelope on available energy savings, resulting in buildings that cost less to operate. Extending this benefit to higher education would help to save money in this capital and budget constrained economy, maximize the return on energy efficiency investments, and support the commitments made by ACUPCC institutions to help eliminate operational greenhouse gas emissions. Read more...

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The ACUPCC Implementer
Issue 50, November 6, 2012

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