Conserving our precious natural resources is a central component of Bucknell’s commitment to sustaining the future of our region and the planet. In 1997, we converted our central power plant from coal to natural gas, achieving a 97 percent reduction in plant emissions (including a 96 percent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions and a 99 percent reduction in suspended particulate emissions). The plant also captures heat produced in power generation and uses it to provide steam heat and chilled water to most campus facilities.
While most of our energy comes from the plant and public utilities, Bucknell is also exploring sources of renewable energy. The University’s first solar array was installed in 2006 and serves as a power source for the Bucknell Center for Sustainability & the Environment. Three more solar arrays have since been added, the most recent, a class tribute from the Class of 2014. A 900-watt wind turbine also was installed in 2013.
Through continuous, ongoing efficiency upgrades — including LED lighting, low-flow water fixtures, green roofs and rain garden projects — and constructing new buildings to meet or exceed LEED standards, we’re also striving to reduce our energy and water use, even as our campus grows. It’s all part of our commitment to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030.