Running a university is a costly affair. The operational expenses associated with running a higher education institution range from utility costs, which quickly add up, to the price of suppling necessary materials for students and staff. The column of running expenses makes it hard to imagine how a university or college ever stays in the black.
Bowling Green State University is working to make sure its books are balanced by considering an investment in green technology. The BG News reported that the university has been researching the idea of installing a geothermal system to reduce the university’s carbon footprint, as well as monthly utility expenses. The energy from the system will be directed toward controlling the heating and cooling of major campus buildings.
Because the ground stays at a consistent temperature at a certain level beneath the surface of the earth, geothermal is an ideal renewable energy resource. A closed-loop system will run water and a combination of materials through the pipes in the ground to capture the solar heat of the earth and transfer that temperature inside a key campus building. This process is reversed during hotter summer months, which allows a structure to remain much more cool, without having to spend considerable money.
“We have that heat energy in the earth that we can then extract and use for heating in the buildings or heating for hot water purposes,” Charles Onasch, director of the geology department at the University, was involved in University President Mary Ellen Mazey’s climate committee making the decision. “It can both heat and cool, and that’s the beauty of geothermal.”
Geothermal energy is the ideal solution for many universities because it not only reduces the energy costs associated with running the institution, but also provides valuable data for students.Tags: Space Conditioning