Current Initiatives - Energy
Skidmore is an energy-conscious college and has committed to an array of initiatives to reduce its energy consumption.
- Occupancy Sensor Initiative: In the spirit of energy conservation and carbon emission reductions, Facilities Services
installed occupancy sensors in appropriate applications campus wide in offices, classrooms,
- Geothermal Heating and Cooling: About 36% of the campus is heated and cooled with geothermal energy. The Arthur Zankel
Music Center, Janet Kinghorn Bernhard Center, Filene Music Building, Saisselin Art
Center, Sussman Village Apartments, Northwoods Village Apartments, the Murray-Aikins
Dining Hall, Weicking Hall, and the Tang Teaching Museum have geothermal heating and
cooling systems with the Dance Center going online very soon. The geothermal systems
provide 100% of the cooling needs and about 70% of the heating needs of the apartments
and Music Center and about 95% of the heating needs of the dining hall. (Note: the
dining hall also benefits from the heat produced from cooking.) For more information
on geothermal energy, please click here.
- Campus Building Temperature Initiative: Skidmore's Campus Building Temperature Initiative was designed to save energy during
the heating and cooling seasons, by raising temperature set points a few degrees during
the cooling season and lowering the set points a few degrees during the heating season.
The program will have three different phases to take into account the varied needs
of work/school days, evening/weekend hours, and vacation/building closures. You can
visit the Facilities website to view the entire policy.
- Skidmore Unplugged Residence Hall Energy Conservation Competition: Skidmore residents compete residence hall against residence hall to try and reduce
their energy consumption by the greatest percentage. Each hall is individually metered
so students can now see how much electricity each residence hall is using in real
The Communications Design II class created all of the fantastic publicity for the event. The logo, emails, stickers, posters, tips, brochures, light switch stickers and a building dashboard website were all their creations.
The Skidmore Unplugged Trophy, pictured to the right, was created by John Galt's Advanced Sculpture class. A special thanks to Dave Rollins and Charlie Engelman for their efforts on the trophy! The trophy will be displayed in Case Center and the winning residence hall from each year will be engraved on a small plaque on the trophy.
Read more about Skidmore Unplugged.
- Renewable Energy Purchasing: Skidmore purchased RECs or Renewable Energy Credits to offset 10% of their electricity
consumption during fiscal year 2012, and enough RECs to offset 15% of our electricity
consumption during fiscal year 2013. The college continues to investigate options
for renewable energy purchasing and potentially on-site development as well. If you
want to know more about RECs, please read more here. Our purchase of RECs has allowed us to become Green Power Partners through the
EPA, which requires that we purchase a minimum amount of renewable energy (5%) based
on our total electricity consumption. Our purchase of RECs in 2011 also allowed the
Liberty League Athletic Conference to be included in the Campus and University Challenge, organized by the EPA Green Power Partnership Program. This challenge tracks and
recognizes the collegiate athletic conferences in the nation with the highest green
power purchasing. In order for a conference to be listed, they must have at least
one Green Power Partner and an total green power purchase of at least 10 million kWh
amongst the conference members. Skidmore's purchase pushed the Liberty League Conference
above the 10 million kWh threshold, adding us to the Challenge!
- LED Lighting: Skidmore is in the process of replacing older, inefficient exit lights with 4.7 watt
LED lights. Other lighting, such as parking lot and walkway lights, may also be upgraded.
- Variable Frequency Drives: Skidmore has installed variable frequency drives on all high-horsepower motors to
maximize energy efficiency. Variable frequency drives control motor speed by adjusting
the alternating current waveform. With the older variable-resistor method, more electrical
energy is lost as heat.
- Cold Water Wash: Skidmore's washing machines use only cold water to reduce energy demands.
- Updated Transformers and Motors: Skidmore has replaced older electric transformers and heating-plant motors with more efficient models.