CSB to receive free energy planning services

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February 22, 2019

The College of Saint Benedict was one of three colleges in Minnesota selected to receive free energy planning services from Ever-Green Energy, St. Paul.

CSB earned the honor through Ever-Green Energy’s Roadmap to Carbon Neutrality program. Also chosen to participate in the pilot program were the University of Minnesota-Morris and the University of St. Thomas.

The program will allow CSB to evaluate existing campus energy programs, profile future energy consumption scenarios and develop a comprehensive list of all energy-related carbon neutrality options available on campus and within the broader community, said Elissa Brown, sustainability coordinator at CSB.

In addition, CSB will identify short-term and long-term system solutions that can improve CSB’s carbon profile, along with budget estimates and possible strategies for implementation.

CSB developed a Climate Action Plan in 2009 to fulfill its commitment under the American Colleges and Universities Presidents’ Climate Commitment (now known as The Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitments). The college’s Sustainability Master Plan in 2012 incorporated actions related to the goal of carbon neutrality, but did not focus on it comprehensively.

“We are overdue for a revised energy and carbon neutrality/climate action plan ... because the landscape of energy management, renewables and more have changed so dramatically over the last decade,” Brown said.

Higher education institutions were invited to apply for the program in December 2018, outlining their goals and the work they have done to date on advancing infrastructure and campus programs. Eight colleges applied to the program.

“The College of Saint Benedict provides a liberal arts education that prepares women to think critically, lead courageously and advocate passionately – all of which are vital in taking action against climate change,” Brown said. “By collaborating with Ever-Green Energy to create and implement a plan for carbon neutrality, we’re leading by example for our students and our communities.”

“We are thrilled to begin working with these institutions that have committed to sustainability and carbon neutrality,” said Ken Smith, president and CEO of Ever-Green Energy, in a statement. “Our team of experts is ready to create tangible, financially viable plans to help each school achieve its goals.”

Ever-Green Energy, based in St. Paul, Minnesota, launched the Roadmap to Carbon Neutrality program to help campus leaders create actionable plans to make their sustainability and carbon neutrality goals a reality.