For Immediate Release
CVCC Earns Utility Saving Award
In an economy where every penny counts, Catawba Valley Community College stands as a model of how to get the most for the least dollars when it comes to energy efficiency.
The college was recently recognized by the North Carolina Energy Office for efficiently managing energy usage. CVCC’s energy consumption cost per square foot is $.80 per square foot, or about half the state average, according to a study conducted by North Carolina State University's Industrial Extension Service (IES).
Reid Conway, energy engineer with the North Carolina Energy Office, presented the award to CVCC maintenance staff at a recent college trustee meeting. “You are to be commended for this achievement,” said Conway, who works with state agencies, universities and community colleges in western North Carolina.
“CVCC is one of the first community colleges to receive this award. This is the payoff of more than 10 years of careful attention to energy expenses as well as efficient construction of new buildings.” Conway noted that during the past 10 years the college has achieved this energy efficiency while it doubled classroom square footage, increased enrollment and hours of operation. “General Statues mandate a reduction in overall energy intensity for the state agencies and the universities. The statues only ask that the community colleges report annual consumption to the North Carolina Energy Office. CVCC has taken this opportunity to be a leader by identifying ways to improve energy efficiency while at the same time improving CVCC’s ability to educate more students within the community,” said Conway.
CVCC President Dr. Garrett D. Hinshaw commended the outstanding work of the staff as well as Catawba County Commissioners’ funding of its energy management systems and upgrades.
“Larry Stalling, our previous maintenance department manager, started the energy management practices more than 10 years ago. But Mark Wise, our current maintenance department manager, and Terry Ester, our chief HVAC technician, have continued in his footsteps. However, without the financial support of the commissioners, we could not have achieved this level of efficiency. We thank the Commissioners for their support,” said Hinshaw.
The study noted some energy consumption “best practices” observed at CVCC:
1. Utilizing the newest technology to monitor HVAC and lighting systems from portable computer system, including email alerts.
2. Controlling HVAC for unoccupied and occupied classrooms.
3. Majority of T-12 lighting has been changed to T-8 lighting inside the main campus buildings.
4. Each year the maintenance department performs equipment overhauls during the spring class break.
Pictured above (from left) are CVCC President Dr. Garrett D. Hinshaw; Maintenance Director Mark Wise; HVAC Technician Terry Ester; and Energy Engineer with the North Carolina Energy Office Reid Conway.