Crews have begun installing 540 solar panels on the roof of the Worcester Sate College Learning Resource Center. The installation, which is being managed on behalf of the college by Massachusetts Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM), should be completed by the end of May.
The installation will be the largest on any college campus in the state, and the largest in Worcester, according to the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.
The photovoltaic array will generate over 140,000 kilowatt hours of electricity annually, which is enough energy to supply electricity to 20 homes of about 2,800 square feet each. The panels should pay for themselves in about 15 years and their lifespan is expected to be about 30 years.
The photovoltaic array is funded by IRS Clean Renewable Energy Bonds (CREBS) and a grant from the Mass Technology Collaborative. For this project, DCAM, in coordination with, the Department of Energy Resources, and Mass Development Financing Authority assisted the college to secure the CREBS, which are no interest bonds approved through the federal IRS. The solar panels are manufactured by Marlborough, Massachusetts-based Evergreen Solar.
The project is a continuation of the college’s commitment to sustainability efforts including:
- Purchase of a biodiesel processor which will begin converting waste cooking oil into fuel by fall of 2009.
- Doubling college recycling rate by implementing single stream recycling in October 2006, eliminating the need for sorting cardboard, mixed paper, plastic and metals.
- Conservation efforts in the dining area include the elimination of cafeteria trays and the installation of high efficiency valves, reducing hot water used in dishwashing by 166,000 gallons a year.
- Every week since November 2008, 500 pounds of food waste has been diverted from the college’s solid waste stream to feed pigs at Sayebrook Farms in Holden, Massachusetts.
- College purchasing now requires recycled content in paper products, trash bags, paper clips and staples. The recycled content in paper office supplies (except photocopy paper) has been increased from 30% to 100% and toilet paper and paper towels are Green Seal certified.
WSC to Honor Philanthropists and Community Leaders at Commencement
Worcester State College alumna Dottie Manning, founder of the “Walk to Cure Cancer” in Worcester, will serve as the 2009 Commencement Speaker at WSC, Sunday May 17th at 1:00 p.m. at the DCU . . .