BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo announced today an
agreement with Community Energy, Inc., that makes UB the first
campus in the State University of New York system to buy a portion
of its electrical power from a commercial supplier of
UB also is the first institution of higher education in New York
to purchase the output of an entire wind-powered 1.5-megawatt
While UB's initial purchase of "green" power amounts to just 2
percent of its substantial electrical load, the switch represents
an annual reduction in carbon dioxide emissions, the primary cause
of global warming, of more than 5 million pounds, according to
Community Energy. It also represents an annual reduction in sulfur
dioxide and nitrogen oxide emissions, by-products of burning fossil
fuels that are components of acid rain and smog, of 30,000 pounds
and 12,000 pounds, respectively.
The university has plans to purchase greater amounts of wind
power in 2003, said Michael F. Dupre, UB associate vice president
for university facilities.
"As an institution we traditionally have been very aggressive on
energy conservation and sustainability issues," Dupre added. "This
purchase of wind power is a natural outgrowth of what we've been
Starting today, UB will pay a small premium to procure clean
"green" power from the Fenner Wind Power Project located in the
Town of Fenner in Madison County in Central New York. The project
operates 20 huge 1.5-megawatt wind-driven generators connected to
the New York power grid.
One of the 300-foot-tall wind generators now is designated the
"University at Buffalo Wind Turbine."
One wind turbine's monthly output amounts to approximately
330,000 kilowatt hours of electricity, enough to power 500 homes,
according to Community Energy.
For commercial customers, wind-generated electricity costs less
than two cents a kilowatt hour more than conventionally generated
While a bit more expensive, wind power, Dupre explained, offers
substantial environmental benefits compared to the New York
Independent System Operator (ISO) "spot market," the usual source
of UB's electrical power.
Of the variety of fuel sources used to generate New York "spot
market" electricity, 75 percent is generated by fossil-fuel sources
and 32 percent of that amount is from burning coal.
"Burning fossil fuels, especially coal, produces acid rain and
global warming-producing emissions," said Dupre. "Wind power
produces no emissions."
With the purchase of wind power, Dupre said UB is responding
enthusiastically to Gov. George E. Pataki's Executive Order 111,
"Green and Clean," which requires all state facilities to procure a
portion of their power from renewable sources such as hydro,
biomass, wind and solar.
Under the governor's executive order, by 2005 state agencies are
required to meet 10 percent of their electrical needs with
environmentally friendly "green" power. That percentage will
increase to 20 percent by 2010.
According to Dupre, this wind-power purchase is part of UB's
environmentally responsible "green campus" program, which includes
an aggressive recycling program and a commitment by many campus
departments to use 100 percent post-consumer recycled paper for all
copying and printing.
UB has responded to the governor's Executive Order 111 by
establishing and/or empowering working groups in energy
conservation, "green" building design, "green" power,
energy-efficient purchasing, and alternative-fueled vehicles. All
new UB building construction will meet or exceed the "green"
building design and energy efficiency requirements of the executive
order, according to Dupre.
UB's nationally recognized energy-conservation program is
credited with saving more than $9 million in energy costs annually.
Go to http://wings.buffalo.edu/ubgreen/
for details on UB's campus energy and environmental programs.