A strategy for Mississippi State University to become
the region's most respected land-grant institution
FutureSTATE 2015 Progress Reports
ACHIEVE FISCAL STABILITY
Initiative: Implement an energy conservation plan with specific reduction goals based on FY 2006 usage and return cost savings to units achieving reductions.
Achievements of the past year:
- Used an Energy Committee to brainstorm techniques, formulate goals, design a website, inform the campus community, advise the in-house conservation team, etc.
- Implemented a program of trimming after-hours and holiday heating/cooling costs for buildings with up-to-date controls.
- Upgraded the controls in several energy-intensive buildings.
- Installed lighting controls timers for parking lots (non-residence hall) and other occasional-use area lighting. The lights are turned off at 11 p.m. in area with no usage.
- Negotiated a variable-rate TVA contract with lower cost flat-rate.
- Initiated replacement of inefficient steam boilers that transported steam across campus via obsolete tunnel/piping system; being replaced by high-efficiency hot water heaters at Central Plant and point-of-use high-efficiency boilers at the distant locations; two-year payback at gas prices.
- Attained a campus wide reduction in consumption of 15% for FY07 compared to FY06; first quarter FY08 represented 24% improvement over same period FY06.
Goals for the next year:
- Upgrade controls for another major energy-intensive building
- Fine tune the operation of the high-efficiency boilers to minimize fuel consumption.
- Investigate and install lighting controls (timers or sensors) in applicable interior spaces such as classrooms, utility closets, equipment rooms, etc.
- Integrate the energy conservation strategies with the design standards for new buildings and renovation projects.
- Hire an Energy Engineer to monitor and improve upon the conservation program and develop more technological advances in conservation.
Constraints to full implementation of this initiative:
The current competitive job market and available candidate pool has made it difficult to retain/rehire an energy manager; additionally resources are always a concern.
Proposed modification of the initiative:
Change the goal from implement to monitor and manage the campus energy program. With the increase in our energy cost projected to be 14%, these conservation efforts will become even more important.
Overall assessment of the status of the initiative or other comments:
The University has gained tremendously in curbing energy consumption in just 1.5 years, by utilizing in-house talent and expertise in changing the business-as-usual policy of heating/cooling the buildings, and aided by the bountiful cooperation of the campus community. The Administration has enabled heavy investment in new equipment, in return for further anticipated savings. It is paying off for MSU to "think outside the box", and as energy costs increase, other savings opportunities will emerge as the previous payback metrics become obsolete. It is imperative for MSU to remain committed to searching out and practicing new energy conservation methods and techniques and making the required investments in man-hours and improved technology.