MSUToday
Published: Oct. 10, 2018

EPA salutes MSU green energy

Contact(s): Jessi Adler Communications and Brand Strategy office: (517) 355-6469 jessi.adler@cabs.msu.edu, Wolfgang Bauer Physics and Astronomy office: (517) 432-4762 bauer@pa.msu.edu

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today recognized Michigan State University’s renewable energy programs with a 2018 Green Power Leadership Award at the 2018 Renewable Energy Markets Conference in Houston, Texas.

The annual awards recognize America’s leading renewable power users’ commitment and contribution to helping advance the nation’s voluntary green power market, meaning electricity generated from environmentally preferable renewable resources such as wind, solar, geothermal, biogas, biomass and low-impact hydro. Michigan State was one of only five organizations saluted in the direct project engagement category.

“MSU is proud to be recognized by the Environmental Protection Agency for our commitment to addressing renewable energy,” MSU Director of Sustainability Amy Butler said. “Our portfolio of renewable energy sources, combined with the university micro-grid, serves as a test bed for research in optimizing grid operations, as well as being a training and education platform to advance the integration of renewables for both business and institutions. Installing renewable systems on campus that can save the university money while also helping the environment is a highly visible demonstration of our priority to minimize our footprint.”

MSU generates up to 2.4 million kilowatt-hours of green power annually from an on-site anaerobic digestion system, which converts waste from campus farms and dining halls into energy. In addition, green energy generation on campus this year will increase 600 percent thanks to MSU’s new solar carport array, the largest in the country. The array covers 5,000 parking spaces on parking lots spanning 45 acres, generating power less expensively than purchasing off the grid.

Overall, on-campus renewable energy production is expected to be about 17.4 million kWh of renewable power annually, enough to meet 7 percent of MSU’s electricity use and up to 18 percent of its peak power demand.

MSU ranks No. 20 on the EPA’s list of top on-site green power partners. MSU also was recognized as part of the EPA’s College and University Green Power Challenge earlier this year.

Other sustainability services on campus include MSU Recycling, MSU Bikes, the MSU Surplus Store and more.

A new superpower on the horizon. Michigan State University scientists look to the sun to solve Earth's biggest problems. Read our paid post on the New York Times site