The Edmond Sun

University Life

April 27, 2010

UCO wins award from EPA

EDMOND — The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently announced the University of Central Oklahoma is the 2009-10 Individual Conference Champion for using more green power than any other school in the Lone Star Conference.

The award recognizes the school that has made the largest individual purchase of green power, generated from renewable sources, within a qualifying conference.

Beating its conference rivals by purchasing 26 million kilowatt-hours (kWh) of green power, Central currently receives 100 percent of its energy from wind power, helping to reduce the environmental impacts associated with the campus’ electricity use.

“This is one of many efforts led by Central to develop a happy, healthy, and energy-efficient campus and community,” said Central’s Executive Vice President Steve Kreidler.

“We feel it’s important to do our part to help reduce the dependency on non-green energy resources, and work towards a healthier and cleaner future.”

Estimated by the EPA, Central’s purchase of green power from Edmond Electric is equivalent to the carbon dioxide emission from the electricity use of more than 2,000 average American homes each year, and has the equivalent impact of reducing the carbon dioxide emission of nearly 4,000 passenger cars annually.

Other highlighted sustainable initiatives at Central include “Bum-A-Bike,” allowing Central students, staff and faculty to check out bikes free of charge; the UCO Physical Plant’s development of bio-diesel fuel from cooking oil used in campus restaurants to fuel university vehicles; a campus-wide recycling program; a Lean University program to eliminate waste in day-to-day processes; and “Connect by Hertz,” the state’s first car-share program.

Central has a standing relationship with the EPA, becoming a part of the Green Power Partnership in 2006. The Green Power Partnership is a voluntary program, which encourages organizations to use green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with conventional electricity use. The Partnership currently has more than 1,200 partner organizations voluntarily purchasing billions of kilowatt-hours of green power annually.

The University of Central Oklahoma currently ranks as the 15th largest purchaser of green energy among all Green Power Partnership college and university members in the nation.

For more information about sustainability initiatives at Central, visit www.uco.edu.

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