For over a decade, Duquesne University has generated the bulk of its own electricity with a clean-burning natural gas turbine located at the heart of campus. This cogeneration plant produces approximately 85% of the power used to light, heat and cool the University’s facilities. It is Pennsylvania’s first approved generation system for creating Alternative Energy Credits and the first academic institution in the state to receive the EPA’s Energy Star Combined Heat and Power Award.
The University purchases the remainder of its energy needs from renewable sources. This combination of energy generation and renewable energy purchasing led to its 100% reliance on clean energy. The EPA recognized Duquesne University for two consecutive years as the Individual Conference Champion for purchasing more green power than any other school in the Atlantic 10 Conference.
Cooling With Ice
The installation of a highly efficient cooling system that relies on ice is the first of its kind in a Pittsburgh academic institution. The process begins by creating ice in 28 massive storage tanks. The ice then melts, creating chilled fluid that is pumped across campus and cools multiple buildings. By creating the ice at night, the University reduces its peak energy demand. As Duquesne does its part to ease the strain on the power grid, other consumers’ needs can be more easily met and utility companies are able to increase capacity, ultimately lessening the need for new power plants.