Connecticut College Updates Its Renewable Energy Commitment

Connecticut College’s Environmental Model Committee (EMC) has coordinated the purchase of renewable energy certificates (RECs) that provide a subsidy for production of wind energy equal to about half of the college’s annual electricity consumption.

The college purchased RECs to balance 7.5 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of the college’s electricity usage. Last year, the college purchased RECs equal to 44 percent of the college’s annual electricity consumption, up from 22 and 17 percent in the first two years of the program. This latest purchase prevents the release of over 10 million pounds of greenhouse gases from entering the atmosphere. This has the equivalent environmental benefit to removing 978 cars from U.S. roadways or planting 1281 acres of trees. This year the students, via the EMC, purchased the 100 percent, Green-e(r) certified, new wind renewable energy certificates from 3 Phases Energy, a renewable energy solutions provider and marketing firm. Connecticut College Vice President for Administration Ulysses Hammond said this continued initiative, which is a joint effort between students and administration, strengthens the college’s position as one of the most environmentally committed campuses in the country, demonstrating its commitment to reducing the environmental impact of its energy usage. “Our purchase of renewable energy certificates reaffirms the College’s commitment to be a model for environmental sustainability,” Hammond said. Five years ago, the student-led Renewable Energy Club (also known as REC) proposed that each student pay a $25 a year per student surcharge to support the use of renewable energy. The measure passed overwhelmingly and as a result has helped offset millions of pounds of greenhouse gas emissions. “Connecticut College has been a national leader in the field of renewable energy for the last three years,” said Steve McDougal, Senior Manager of Business Development. “3 Phases Energy is thrilled to be partnering with the College to build awareness for renewable energy that ultimately helps to build new wind farms across the country.”
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