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MCC Increases Energy Efficiency

Posted: September 16, 2011

Manchester Community College will save more than $7,500 a year on its energy costs beginning this fall, thanks to the installation of improved temperature controls and energy-efficient lighting throughout the campus. The new technology allows MCC's energy use to be more tightly controlled, with energy used only when and where specifically needed.

"These projects have given MCC the tools to stretch our energy dollars through better climate control of our classrooms and offices," says MCC President Susan Huard. "Some areas of our buildings lacked adequate heating and cooling controls, leaving us little control over energy costs. Now we can adjust temperatures as needed, our energy costs are lower, and our students, faculty and staff are comfortable and able to concentrate on their learning, teaching, and working."

On the lighting side, "many of our lights were old and expensive to operate and maintain. We've now upgraded to modern, brighter, energy-efficient lights that will yield additional savings," Huard concluded.

In addition to saving money, this project reduces MCC's energy footprint by over 50,000 kilowatt hours per year. LightTec Inc. of Merrimack and Control Technologies Inc. of Manchester completed the improvements over the summer.

The Community College System of NH (CCSNH) was awarded a $1.3 million grant through the State Energy Program under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act from the U.S. Department of Energy, through the NH Office of Energy and Planning. Each CCSNH college received a portion of the funding to address energy usage and reduce long-term energy costs through targeted facilities and systems upgrades.

These cost reductions come at a time when many public entities are feeling the pinch of recent budget cuts, including a 20% cut to state funding for the state's community colleges. These infrastructure improvements will reduce operating costs, and support the colleges’ efforts to keep down the costs to their students.

The State Energy Program, funded by the Recovery Act, is a major investment in energy solutions that will strengthen America's economy, create jobs locally, and support the immediate use of the cheapest, cleanest, and most reliable energy technologies we have—energy efficiency, conservation, and renewable energy.