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Sustainability
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  • Past projects

    2014

    CAMPUS GARDEN

    Garden1 Garden 2

    Green fund dollars went to create a campus garden. The raised beds were put in, and the garden was planted in June.  Plans include using the harvested goods in dining service.

    2013

    WATER BOTTLES

    $3,800 was approved to purchase reusable water bottles to give out to first year students. Students signed a pledge to not bring plastic water bottles to campus when they moved in and to use the refillable bottle instead. 

    REC HAND DRYERS

    Automatic high-speed hand dryers were funded for the REC. The Green Fund approved $12,814 for this project. The Hand dryers cut down on paper towel costs and use less energy.

    2012

     

    2011

    PULPER

    The food pulper was a $2722.52 addition to the Spring 2010 Vermicomposting project. In order to aid the worms in the digesting process, the food pulper shreds up food scraps into smaller pieces to make it easier for the vermicomposting worms to digest the food. It also helps the other microorganisms to break down the food scraps.

    HYDRATION STATIONS

     The Green Fund provided $14,331 to install hydration stations in the dorms, Cartwright Center, and Whitney. Hydration stations are the faucet like apparatuses that attach to drinking fountains. They can be used to fill up water bottles with ease. Promoting the use of reusable water bottles has a positive environmental impact because it reduces the use of disposable plastic water bottles

    CARTWRIGHT/WHITNEY LIGHTING

     The Green Fund provided $20,000 to enhance lighting systems in Cartwright and Whitney Centers with the condition that any enhancement have a return on investment at or under 5-years. As of November 16, 2011 various recommendations have been submitted to Student Centers management to fully use the award; to date, completed small lighting projects in Cartwright and Whitney cost $1,835.
    One enhancement included replacement of 45 incandescent lamps which operated at 200-250 watts. The lamps were replaced with 65 watt self-ballasted spiral lamps. This portion of the award cost $895 with replacement labor provided by Student Centers. The project is estimated to to reduce electrical consumption by 34,000 kilowatt hours per year. This will result in an estimated savings of $2,550 per year.

    The second enhancement involved removal and recycling of 32-watt 4-foot linear fluorescent lamps in portions of Cartwright and/or Whitney. Approximately 360 linear 4-foot 25 watt fluorescent lamps have been installed in select hallways, stairwells, restrooms and other common spaces. The project is estimated to reduce electrical consumption by 10,400 kilowatt hours per year. This will result in an estimated savings of $775 per year.

    ESS LIGHTING

     The Green Fund provided $2,100.00 to replace inefficient stage lighting for University Event Support. Stage and floor lighting is an essential service that UES offers. Our traditional equipment uses incandescent light bulbs that draw a significant amount of energy, produce intense heat and have a comparatively short lifestyle. To widen the types of services we can offer, UES applied to the Green Fund for assistance in the purchase of eight LED “Puck” lights and four DJ light fixtures. Thanks to their approval, we purchased said lights, and have been able to use them during many events, aiding student organizations and cutting our energy use in half. While providing student organizations with an eco-friendly way to celebrate, these lights have given UES employees an exciting training opportunity, showing the staff new and standard ways of programming light effects and how to professionally apply them to each event.

    REC LIGHTS PHASE 2

     We replaced all of the fixtures and/or lamps and ballasts in the following areas within the Recreational Eagle Center at the cost of $20,200.00:

    • Multipurpose room - replace 400 watt metal halide low bay lights with 6 lamp high bay fluorescent fixtures.
    • Climbing wall – replace 250 watt metal halide/high pressure sodium indirect fixtures with high lumen compact fluorescent direct/indirect fixtures.
    • Racquetball courts - replace 400 watt metal halide racquetball court fixtures with high lumen compact fluorescent racquetball court fixtures
    • Aerobics room – replace lamp & ballasts with 25 watt lamps and ELEC PSP 1/21 0.88 BF ballasts
    • Martial Arts room – replace lamp & ballasts with 25 watt lamps and ELEC PSP 1/21 0.88 BF ballasts
    • Locker rooms – install 7 occupancy sensors

    We have seen a 15.68% decrease in kWHr from the completion of the project March 2011 through October 2011 which is an incredible savings.

    VETERANS STADIUM RECYCLE BINS

     The Green Fund provided $2,340.00 to purchase permanent recycle bins for the sports complex on campus. Previous to this purchase, we had been using a more flimsy version of the recycle container that gets blown over and cannot stay out year round. Since the placement of the permanent recycle bins we have seen an increase in use of them, and allowed us to place them in more prominent locations. During major events, like football games for UW-L and high schools, concerts, and track meets, we see the use of these recycle bins go way up when placed next to a regular garbage can. Without these new bins, much of what is now recycled would go in the regular waste container.

    RES-LIFE LIGHTS

     The Green Fund provided $13,962 to remove and recycle 32-watt 4-foot linear fluorescent lamps in all residence halls, with the exception of Eagle Hall. Approximately 5,100 linear 4-foot 25 watt fluorescent lamps were installed in all hallways, stairwells, restrooms and other common spaces in all residence halls. The project was completed during the summer of 2011. Residence Life paid for the labor cost associated with this project. The project is estimated to to reduce electrical consumption by 147,600 kilowatt hours per year. This will result in an estimated savings of $11,000 per year.

    STEAM TRAPS

     As with any mechanical device, a steam trap can malfunction. If the steam trap fails closed, the device that should be draining will flood and the heat transfer process will stop, and the water, air or other equipment will not be functioning properly. If the trap fails open, steam will not be completely consumed or condensed in the equipment and as steam blows through heat is lost which lowers system efficiency. The green fund award provided funds to repair and/or replace faulty steam traps in residence halls at a cost of $3,750.00.

    2010

    LED LIGHTS

    $4,326.00 was used from the Green Fund for the purchase of 154 LED bulbs to replace 154 halogen light bulbs that are currently installed along track lighting in the food service areas of Cartwright Center: The Galley, Trattoria & Yan Can Cook, The Cellar, and Cyber Cafe. The new bulbs last for 50,000 hours, while the old halogen bulbs only last about 2,000 hours – thus the LEDs will last over 10 years while the current bulbs rarely last a year. This is because they use less energy for every hour they are in use, even though they emit comparable amounts of light. The LED bulbs are 3 and 5.5 watt bulbs, to replace the halogen bulbs that are 50 watt and 60 watt respectively. Therefore, LEDs are very efficient because they use less electricity to generate comparable light and they last a lot longer and save on the labor cost of replacement. Total estimated energy savings in a year is estimated to be 34,716 Kilowatt Hours (KWH), for a total electrical savings of $3,291 annually based on 90 hours of use per week, or 4680 hours per year.

    VERMICOMPOSTING

    The Green Fund approved an $18,944.00 project in Spring 2010 The vermicomposting project is a successful effort to reduce waste and turn it into something effective and useful. Compost is a nutrient rich natural alternative to chemical fertilizers used in conventional gardening. Vermicomposting is the process in which worms ingest food scraps, digest them and then excrete casings, the final product. The initial proposal fund helped us buy the initial group of worms and the 5 bins that are used to contain the composting process. Examples of foods that have been composted would include vegetables, non-citrus fruits, eggshells and coffee rinds. Since Thanksgiving 2011, the project has been in full swing, with both pre-consumer and post-consumer waste being composted. This project is a great way to turn something that would normally be considered waste and tossed away into something useful for our other community partners. 

    REC LIGHTS

     The REC Center used $80,350.00 to replace inefficient lighting in Spring 2010. They replaced 80 halide/high pressure sodium fixtures in the fieldhouse (gym area) with fluorescent fixtures. They also reduced the number of ballast input watts from 920 to 360. Additional lighting controls were added which enables lights metal to be turn on/off on a specific court and control whether 2, 4 or 6 lamps are turned on/off in each fixture.

    LOW-FLOW SHOWERHEADS

     The Green Fund provided $9,342 to install lower flow shower heads in every shower fixture in 8 residence halls; this project affected all current halls except Reuter and Eagle. Residence Life provided labor for replacing the shower heads at no cost to the Green Fund. During the first 11 months after installation, (August 2010 - June 2011) water consumption was reduced by 26% from the prior 3-year average for the same monthly periods. This resulted in estimated savings of approximately 7.5 million gallons of water. This project also resulted in the reduction in steam consumption to heat the water and water softening salt/labor.

    2009

    STEAM METERS

     The Green Fund covered a portion ($30,000) of the cost to install condensate meters and steam meters in Cartwright, Whitney, REC and all residence halls existing at the time of the award. Prior to installation UW-L had no data on actual steam consumption and condensate return in each of the buildings. The project allowed UW-L to establish a baseline of steam consumption.

    This project likely resulted in savings on steam costs for some student funded facilities, because the prior method for charging for steam use for all buildings was based on square footage. When size is equalized in the square footage charge-back model, buildings with more exhaust (e.g. Whitney) would have profited at the expense of other building with less fresh air having to be brought into the building and conditioned (e.g., older residence halls). Meters allow for steam costs to be charged based on the amount of steam consumed in each facility.

    EXERCISE MACHINE

    Equipment was installed on one of the exercise machines in the REC so that people could create usable electrical energy while they exercised. The final project cost was $426.00 The machine was set up so that it generated its own reading light on the machine, and also a couple of re-charging ports were installed so that the user could re-charge cell phones, etc. from the electrical power that they were creating. It was designed to be an educational tool and to promote the possibility of hooking up numerous machines in the REC that are constantly in use, and actually create a substantial amount of power. It was in use for a few years; however, the machine has since reached the end of its life and is no longer in use.

    BICYCLE POWERED CONCERT

    In Spring 2010, the UWL Environmental Council sponsored a bicycle powered concert. This innovative event only cost the Green Fund $2,500. The majority of the power used by the concert was powered by students riding stationary energy generating bicycles onstage. .

    ELECTRIC VAN

    University Centers purchased a $10,000 electric truck as an alternative to purchasing a second fuel powered vehicle. Since the arrival of the electric truck we have driven over 300 miles composting, transporting equipment, and running errands between campus buildings. Having the electric truck has made it easier for our Custodial staff to take care of their duties outside of Cartwright Center such as hauling tables and equipment from building to building or to and from green spaces. 

    RECYCLE BINS

    In Fall 2009, $3,700 was used to fund the outdoor recycling bins seen around campus. Clear recycling bins have been shown to have lower rates of contamination, which occurs when people put garbage in the recycling bins. This is why the university chose to buy clear outdoor recycling bins.