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December 4, 2001

UW-RF Leads Nation's Schools in Energy Conservation

UW-River Falls has been recognized nationally as an exemplary higher education campus for energy conservation.

In a report released in November titled, "State of the Campus Environment: A National Report Card on Environmental Performance and Sustainability in Higher Education," the National Wildlife Federation included UW-RF on a list of 14 colleges that are especially committed to energy conservation and are leaders in reducing energy consumption.

The report was based on the results of the first national survey ever undertaken to gather information on environmental initiatives at U.S. institutions of higher learning. The survey generated 1,116 responses from presidents, provosts and chiefs of administration and operations at 891 of the nation's 4,100 colleges and universities.

UW-RF Facilities Director Waldo Hagen said that over the past 25 years the University has instituted a number of methods for conserving resources.

During the period last year when energy prices were at their highest, students, faculty and staff tried a little harder to conserve, though it sometimes meant making sacrifices.

Said Hagen, "We are always trying to save energy when we can by heating or cooling spaces only when they need it. We have switched to higher-efficiency lights that use less energy, and we have installed variable frequency drives that allow us to run air handlers for air circulation more efficiently.

"We have insulated various pieces of equipment, such as pipes and steam lines, to reduce energy loss, and we have electronic controls on many of our buildings that allow us to better control when equipment is operating, and to regulate the temperature of the buildings."

Said Chancellor Ann Lydecker, "We look forward to continuing our energy conservation measures with the design and construction of our new student center, as well as in our day-to-day practices on this campus. Waldo Hagen, Campus Planner Dale Braun and Vice Chancellor for Administration and Finance Virgil Nylander do a wonderful job of keeping our campus and our facilities environmentally sound."

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