History of Energy Conservation at Thomas College
Thomas has a long history of environmental stewardship. Below is the history of energy conservation at Thomas College.
- All Windows replaced in GPH, Village, Administration buildings to save on heating costs.
- Ayotte Auditorium added with energy-efficent heating, cooling, and lighting systems.
- Well drilled to water athletic fields lowering public water charges.
- Replaced paper course evaluations with an online version.
- Added new heating controls added to GPH rooms to better control heating by room instead of by floor.
- Honeywell EBI software added to manage heating, cooling and door access systems.
- Bartlett Hall opened Fall 2003 with high-efficiency heating, cooling, and lighting systems.
- Alfond Athletic Center opened Fall 2006 with increased use of skylights to reduce artificial lighting needed.
- Started multi-year project of replacing lighting in classrooms and administration building hallways with more efficient bulbs.
- Started adding motion sensors to vending machines using electricity to cool.
- Student Environmental Club is formed.
- Installed new energy efficient boiler in the Student Center.
- Student group revives campus recycling of office paper, newspaper, and bottles/cans. - President Spann creates ad-hoc committee for energy conservation.
- Insulation projects started in original campus buildings to lower heat loss in the "cap" of each building.
- Gym lighting replaced with more efficient lighting.
- Well-insulated Townhouses built. Oil heating systems are energy-efficient System 2000s. R-studio software used to manage heating and cooling.
- CRT monitors replaced with flat panels to save electricity.
- Windows servers moved to smaller blades with network attached storage to save electricity.
- New procedures for measuring monthly oil consumption added for larger buildings.
- Dining Services tries "trayless day" to save cleaning and disposal costs.
- Dining Services starts re-cycling oil.
- President replaces car with a hybrid.
- Student Lounge (124) lighting replaced with more efficent lighting.
- Student Center connected to EBI management system along with new controls to lower heating costs.
- Administration building connected to EBI management system along with new controls to lower heating costs.
- Classroom, Library, Auditorium, and Gym CO2 detectors added to make room ventilators more efficient.
- GPH boiler burners replaced with more energy efficient models.
- Programmable thermostats added to Alumni House to turn back temperature at night.
- New oil measurement device added to Athletic Center.
- CFI Bulb swap program run by RA in Bartlett.
- Insulation panels added below Village windows.
- New devices and procedures added for measuring electricity monthly for the original three campus buildings; GPH res. hall, administration/classroom building, and the student center.
- First Energy Fair in October with bulb-swap.
- Point-of-use hot water systems added to Administration building and Alumni House for hot water during summer months.
- New electricity use information from CMP being used for decision making.
- The first solar photovoltaic (PV) system (picture) was installed on the roof of the main administration and classroom building. This is an 8.3 kilowatt grid-tied system with 44 panels. Total power production will equal approximately 11,428 kWh annually. This offsets approximately 14,856 pounds of CO2 emissions annually. This saves about $1,600 per year and was funded by a $50,000 PUC grant.
- Athletics hall way lighting replaced with more efficient lighting.
- Lighting replaced with more efficient lighting in classrooms 126, 222, and 223.
- Several Windows servers moved to smaller blades with network attached storage to save electricity.
- Occupancy sensors were added in public places to turn off lights automatically.
- Athletics Center Field House lighting replaced with more efficient lighting.
- A more efficient air conditioner was installed in computer lab 126.
- New energy efficient oil boiler was purchased for the Alumni House.
- Hosted, in partnership with the Mid-Maine Chamber of Commerce, a Business Breakfast focused on Solar vs. Wind Energy for Businesses presented by Greg Fletcher from KVCC.
- The ice machine in the Dining Center was replaced with an Energy Star model.
- Trays removed from the Dining Center to reduce cleaning and disposal costs.
- Lighting replaced with more efficient lighting in remaining classrooms.
- One of the highest energy use buildings, the Student Commons, received new upgrades to lower energy use while renovating.
- Car sharing options were added.
- The first well for the geothermal system planned for the Alfond Academic Center was drilled.
- The largest solar PV array in Maine was added to the Alfond Athletic Center. Comprised of almost 700 panels, this 167kW system produces up to 11% of the campus's electricity used each year.
- Thomas charges its first EV (electric vehicle) on campus, owned by an employee. Plans are made to provide level II EV charging stations on campus as demand increases.