Energy conservation does more than reduce the College's financial exposure. It reduces environmental and social costs as well. Energy conservation mitigates the numerous adverse environmental and social impacts associated with energy production and consumption. These include air pollution, acid rain and global warming, oil spills and water pollution, loss of wilderness areas, construction of new power plants, foreign energy dependence and the risk of international conflict over energy supplies.
Higher education is a resource-intensive enterprise. It takes massive amounts of materials and natural resources to support a student in an academic community for four years. It is the College’s goal to ensure that these resources are used as efficiently as possible, to minimize our impact on the world around us.
Since 2003, the College has invested approximately $200,000 per year in energy conservation projects, and these projects have had a net simple payback of approximately 2.3 years.Examples of some of these projects are described below.
Project Description Amherst College's cogeneration system will consist of a 1250-kW gas turbine generator that burns natural gas or diesel fuel. The turbine, similar in design to a small aircraft engine, will turn an electrical generator connected to the campus electrical system and send its hot exhaust to a heat recovery steam generator (HRSG).