UW-Oshkosh: launches effort to show others how to be ‘green’

Dani Stolley, (920) 424-7121

OSHKOSH – With $30,000 from Johnson Controls Inc. of Milwaukee, the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh will establish energy benchmarks that will be the model for other college campuses in Wisconsin and beyond.

As host of the world’s largest Earth Charter Community Summit, the state’s largest purchaser of renewable energy and the recipient of several environmental awards, UW-Oshkosh already is a “green” campus.

“These funds will allow UW-Oshkosh to track energy use trends through the collection of metered data and will enable facility managers and others to further optimize energy conservation on campus,” said Stephen Anderson of Johnson Controls. “We’re extremely please that we can help UW-Oshkosh in its aggressive pursuit of wise environmental stewardship.”

“This is a wonderful boost for our energy conservation efforts,” said UW-Oshkosh Foundation President Thomas Keefe. “We already are a ‘green’ model for Wisconsin campuses. This will only make us better.”

The funding comes from the company’s Educational Achievement Giving Program. Johnson Controls recently announced $250,000 in grants to schools and colleges nationwide. UW-Oshkosh was the only recipient in Wisconsin.

Johnson Controls has worked extensively with UW-Oshkosh on its energy conservation efforts to date. With the benchmarking data, it will try to show other campuses what they can do to lower their energy consumption.

The grant also will launch a strategic planning initiative to bring further “green” improvements to campus, in addition to paying for a student intern to collect the energy benchmarking data.

The data will be updated regularly in order that the campus can continue to lower energy consumption and increase its use of renewable resources.

The benchmarking effort will be overseen by professor David Barnhill, director of the campus environmental studies program.

Following the Oct. 1-8 UW-Oshkosh Earth Charter Community Summit, Barnhill and others will meet to discuss other elements of the “green” initiative to be launched with the Johnson Controls funding.