Alliant Energy recently presented a $18,969 rebate to Central College for energy-saving projects. Central installed new insulation in Gaass residence hall and an energy-efficient heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system in the Maytag Student Center. The projects were completed under Alliant Energy’s custom rebate and new construction energy programs — financial incentives that help offset the cost of energy-saving projects.
Through these projects, Central expects to save nearly 25,000 therms of natural gas each year. The energy savings will prevent approximately 132 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions each year —equivalent to removing about 28 passenger vehicles from Iowa roadways, or the amount of carbon dioxide sequestered by nearly 109 acres of forest in the United States.
Mike Lubberden, director of facilities planning and management, said the changes to Maytag Student Center involve complex equipment and strategies. “The control system includes demand-based ventilation,” Lubberden said, “using occupant CO2 levels, occupancy sensors (which also control lighting) and pressure independent control valves to maximize efficiency of the heating system.” In addition, Lubberden said a new exhaust system in the bistro kitchen removes only the necessary amount of air over cooking equipment.
“Improving the energy efficiency of our facilities is just one way in which we can enhance the learning environment for our students,” said Mark Putnam, Central College president. “These projects support our commitment to provide a first-class learning experience that also benefits the environment.”