The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

November 7, 2012

ECC making energy-efficient upgrades to 9 buildings

FOR THE DAILY SOUTHERNER
FOR THE DAILY SOUTHERNER

TARBORO — Edgecombe Community College (ECC) is making upgrades to its campus to improve energy efficiency.

Brady Energy Services, a  providing energy-efficient heating and cooling systems as well as comprehensive building solutions across North Carolina, has begun the improvements to nine ECC buildings. Eight of the buildings are on the main campus in Tarboro and one is on the Rocky Mount campus. The upgrades are estimated to cost $1.4 million.

“We are excited to collaborate with Brady to install energy conservation measures and reduce energy consumption campus wide,” said ECC president Dr. Deborah Lamm. “From our unique program in historic preservation to courses that focus on conservation and green technology, we have implemented a variety of initiatives and technology in an effort to reduce our footprint on the environment. This energy savings contract is another important step in that process.”

ECC leaders funded the upgrades with a performance contract. The contract allows the college to use future energy and operational savings to finance the infrastructure improvements up front. Trane anticipates the energy savings will exceed $2.3 million over the next 15 years.

“Studies show that the classroom environment (lighting, air quality and temperature) has an impact on an educator’s ability to teach and a student’s ability to learn,” explained Phil Kirk, director of Brady Energy Services. “What’s more is ECC is improving the learning environment at net-zero effect to the college, with no capital expenditure or expense to the taxpayer required.

The improvements by Brady to ECC include lighting upgrades, new heating, ventilation and air-conditioning equipment, as well as building automation. When complete, the college is expected to reduce its annual energy consumption by more than 1 million kWh, the average annual usage by 685 households, and more than 260 million BTU’s of natural gas, the average annual usage of five households. These figures are based on estimated average household usage according to the most recent residential energy consumption survey available from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.