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UH’s Leeward Oahu campus reaches ‘Net-Zero’ energy efficiency

Leeward Community College has solar panel-covered parking canopies, which help generate...
Leeward Community College has solar panel-covered parking canopies, which help generate electricity.(UH)
Published: Jul. 20, 2020 at 4:46 PM HST
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HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The University of Hawaii’s Leeward Community College is one of the first virtually net-zero energy campuses in the country, according to the school.

That means the campus is generating the same amount of energy as it uses. 

The school says so far, it has been able to produce about 97 percent of its energy through on-site solar, and other energy saving measures. 

Officials say those efforts will save the state $8.4 million over the next 20 years.

“Sustainability is work. It’s not something that comes easy and it shouldn’t be looked at as hard work, but it should be looked at as something that needs effort. So that means going back ... and everyone having their kuleana,” Leeward CC student Manuel Diaz, Jr. said.

The net-zero project at the campus is a partnership between UH, Johnson Controls and Hawaiian Electric Industries subsidiary Pacific Current.

The school added that 3,579 photovoltaic modules installed on the campus are capable of generating 1.678 MW of power annually. That’s enough power for 230 homes, or to offset greenhouse gas emissions equal to 4,642 barrels of oil a year. 

Four other UH campuses will soon generate their own renewable energy. The state has a goal of making all 10 UH campuses net-zero by the year, 2035.

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