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State Champion for Energy Efficiency

The collective effort of the UMass Chan Medical School community to become more sustainable and energy efficient was recognized in a big way on June 14 with the presentation of a State Champion Business Leader award by the Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships.

The annual awards program and related energy summit took place in Stamford, Conn. While many case studies were presented, only one organization from each state was selected for the leadership award. The medical school was nominated for the award by National Grid for its “outstanding achievements in energy efficiency."

“As a public institution, we believe it is incumbent on us to lead by example and manage our resources in ways that limit the impact on our environment,” said John Baker, associate vice chancellor of facilities management. “Our energy efficiency measures help us reduce our carbon footprint by introducing cleaner technologies to our campus that will pay dividends for the people of the commonwealth for decades to come. At the same time, we are actively engaging staff, faculty and students to be more aware of how, through small everyday actions, they can help reduce energy consumption.”

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The Northeast Business Leaders for Energy Efficiency recognition program highlights the accomplishments of organizations that are participating in energy efficiency programs across the region, and were selected for recognition based on their successes in specific projects and programs.

“We appreciate this special recognition, and our ongoing partnership with National Grid on a range of efficiency programs,” said Melissa Lucas, manager of sustainability and energy efficiency at UMass Chan, who accepted the award on behalf of the Medical School.

Through the recent expansion of its combined heat and power plant, UMass Chan continues to showcase its leadership in energy efficiency. At the heart of the power plant expansion, which serves the Worcester campus with steam, chilled water and electricity, is a high-efficiency, 7.5-megawatt, gas-fired combustion turbine and an associated heat recovery system. The addition of the new turbine will allow UMass Chan to accommodate the power needs of the Albert Sherman Center, a 500,000-square-foot research and education facility now under construction.

With the new cogeneration system in place, UMass Chan will increase its capacity to generate electricity on its Worcester campus while reducing its green-house gas emissions. UMass Chan has also recently upgraded the lighting in many areas of the campus with Energy Star lighting. In addition to reducing electric loads, these upgrades will reduce maintenance costs for replacing the lights while maintaining quality lighting.

“National Grid is passionate about sustainability and its stewardship of our region’s energy resources. We are pleased that UMass Chan Medical School has been awarded this recognition," said Marcy Reed, president of National Grid MA. “UMass Chan Medical School has a long history of championing and implementing energy-efficient measures and is truly leading by example. The school is a great example of National Grid's commitment to driving energy efficiency awareness through its partners in Massachusetts and surrounding areas.”