Solar Panels on the roof of Anderson Student Center

New Solar Panels Installed on Anderson Student Center

A solar panel system has been recently installed on top of the Anderson Student Center on the UST campus.  The 40 kilowatt photovoltaic panel array will contribute the university’s goal of reducing carbon emissions, and help students in geography, biology, engineering and other fields learn hands-on about the technology.

Students in Paul Lorah’s Conservation Geography class wrote a Campus Sustainability Fund proposal for the solar panels with a cost of $150,000. The project received $50,571 from St. Thomas’ Campus Sustainability Fund and in the form of 10 annual rebates (estimated to be more than $11,000 each) from the Made in Minnesota Solar Energy Program Lottery.

On average, the solar panel system will produce 56,000 kilowatt hours per year for the next 25 years. Electricity generated by the system will lower UST energy costs by approximately $5,100 per year. The system’s carbon-reduction will be the equivalent of 4,345 gallons of gasoline consumed per year (108,585 gallons over 25 years), or the equivalent of 41,477 pounds of coal burned per year (1,036,518 pounds over 25 years).

For more details, see the Newsroom story.

St. Thomas Students, Professor Receive EPA Grant for Phosphorus Removal Project

Gaston “Chip” Small, a St. Thomas biology assistant professor, and his students have received an $15,000 EPA grant to further work they are doing on the phosphorus pollution in Como Lake in St. Paul. The project involves collecting data about pollution levels in the lake and plugging these into a model that could predict the effects of different efforts to correct the problem. As one of 42 EPA grant recipients the St. Thomas team is invited to Washington, D.C., in April to present their project and compete for a larger, $90,000 grant to further their efforts.

For more details, see the Newsroom story.

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St. Thomas is a certified EPA Green Power partner

A voluntary program that supports the organizational procurement of green power by offering expert advice, technical support, tools and resources.

UST signs Presidents Climate Commitment

President Dease announced the signing of the Presidents Climate Commitment at his 2008 Convocation Speech