Solar Panels Add to the Greening of Daemen College
Solar Panels the Latest of Many Daemen Energy-Saving Initiatives
April 24, 2012
Inquiries: Mike Andrei
Daemen College has added solar panels to its strong commitment to green energy and sustainability initiatives. One hundred and sixteen Evergreen 210 watt panels were installed on the roof of the Research & Information Commons in early April by Amherst-based Solar Liberty, the largest installer of solar electric panels in New York State.
When fully operational the solar energy system will supply four percent of the College’s monthly energy use. It will also result in a lower long term carbon footprint for the College, reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 260 tons of CO2 through the College's 15 year lease on the system. This is, also, equivalent to planting 10,000 trees, or taking approximately 878,000 miles off the road in a small car.
The solar energy panels will result in an estimated annual savings of $2,500 off of the College’s electric bill. Future savings will increase as the cost of electricity rises.
Daemen College is also among a group of 33 leading colleges and universities that are committing $65 billion dollars to an innovative energy financing initiative: The $1 Billion Dollar Green Challenge. The Challenge launched publicly on October 11, 2011, at the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher education (AASHE) in Pittsburgh, and has invited colleges, universities, and other nonprofits to invest a total of $1 billion in self-managed green revolving funds that finance energy efficiency upgrades.
Over the years, Daemen College has implemented many energy-saving projects. Some of these include lighting retrofits; boiler upgrades; energy studies; geothermal-exchange heating and cooling (in the Visual & Performing Arts Center); and water-saving initiatives.
Daemen’s commitment to green initiatives and sustainability was recognized in 2010 by the U.S. Green Building Council, which honored the Research & Information Commons (RIC) with a Gold LEED Certification. The award cited innovation and state-of-the-art environmental design across all the metrics that matter most: energy savings; water efficiency; CO2 emissions reduction; improved indoor environmental quality; and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts.
(In addition to being a Western New York company, Solar Liberty has been recognized with an award from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) for being the largest installer of solar power systems in New York State. Daemen’s solar energy system also uses racking – tilting the panels at a 10 degree pitch for additional power production – from another Buffalo-based firm, DynoRaxx).