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The Scoop Behind Hofstra’s Efficient Energy

By Brian StieglitzStaff Writer Students and faculty alike raised questions about Hofstra’s energy sustainability during Hurricane Sandy two weeks ago. The University was able to get power back to residence halls quickly, causing comments and questions about Hofstra’s generator and its use of solar and thermal energy. A lingering myth circling around campus says that Hofstra creates its own energy. This brings to mind a Dr. Frankenstein-like lab deep below the Rathskellar, populated by wild-haired scientists creating weird and otherworldly methods of energy sustainability and creation. Although this would be an incredible facet of our university, it is not the case. There is no underground project in which the creation of Hofstra energy ends with an abrupt, “It’s alive!” Although Hofstra University does not create its own energy, it does redirect, recycle and implement useful and efficient energy sources. This is done in many forms, including the recent construction of thermo-pane windows in Weed, Hauser and Calkins Halls. Below the Student Center is also a co-generator, which has been used to supply the University with electricity since 1990. The co-generator redirects heat energy that would usually be lost from the main generator. In 1990, Hofstra installed and implemented a demand-response cogeneration facility that redirects 400 kilowatts of power to the surrounding area during critical times, such as what Long Island recently experienced during the hurricane. According to Hofstra Sustainability Officer Terry Greis, Hofstra applied for a $1,275,000 grant in 1987. The University has promised to re-route power to surrounding areas in the future when requested to do so by the local utility or NYISO. Aside from the implementation of useful energy sources on campus, Hofstra University also promotes green projects off campus. The Students for a Greener Hofstra club is one such promotion of green energy. The organization works with students, Lackmann, the Plant Department and academic registry under the direction of Greis to facilitate green projects in our community. While Hofstra might benefit from some Dr. Frankensteins below the Student Center, be aware of the everyday energy saving that fellow students or employees are invested in. Hofstra is efficient and progressive in using and obtaining energy and promoting a greener future for all of us.

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