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September 8, 2014

Contact: Paige Marlatt Dorr
Office: 916.327.5356
Cell: 916.601.8005
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California Community Colleges Board of Governors Announces Winners of

2014 Energy and Sustainability Awards

Five colleges to be honored September 9 in Sacramento

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The California Community Colleges Board of Governors has selected College of the Desert, Copper Mountain College, Skyline College, Cañada College, and Imperial Valley College as winners of the annual Energy and Sustainability Awards competition. The awards are presented to community colleges or districts that promote energy efficiency and sustainability on their campuses.

Four of these awards were given to colleges who initiated projects that excelled in maximizing Proposition 39 funding, which is distributed to California community colleges to make energy efficient upgrades to their campuses. A separate award was given to a college faculty and student group that developed an outstanding sustainability initiative.
“The drought we are confronting is a stark reminder of the scarcity of the resources we take for granted,” said Manuel Baca, president of the California Community Colleges Board of Governors. “Every effort should be made to conserve those limited resources. The colleges and individuals we are honoring are paving the way toward a sustainable future. I congratulate the winners of these awards and all of the other colleges who have made energy sustainability and conservation a way of life on their campuses.”
Over 300 community college clean energy projects and initiatives were considered for the awards.
The Proposition 39-related awards were given to colleges for excellence in four respective categories: best retrofit project; best self-generation (solar) project; and best “Deemed Incentive” project. “Deemed Incentive” relates to the standard utility rebate given for an energy efficient project. Another Proposition 39 category is known as “Commissioning,” and relates to a process to identify and correct building systems and operations that waste energy.
The awards will be presented to the winners Sept. 9, 2014 at 8:30 a.m. at the Sheraton Grand Hotel in Sacramento during the Community College Facility Coalition Conference. Additionally, an individual award for this year’s CCC Sustainability Champion will be announced at the ceremony.
The award winners and honorable mentions:

Retrofit project winner: Copper Mountain College, in Joshua Tree, Calif., for its campus-wide exterior lighting retrofit project. The project will result in annual energy cost savings of nearly $14,600 and consisted of replacing existing exterior parking lot and walkway fluorescent and metal halide lamps with advanced LED fixtures campus-wide.

Honorable mention: Palo Verde Community College, in Blythe, Calif., for its exterior lighting retrofit.

Commissioning projects: College of the Desert, in Palm Desert, Calif., for taking steps to reduce energy used in the Multi-Agency Library. These steps include measuring existing building energy usage, investigating building operations and hours equipment are in use, identifying malfunctioning systems, and corrective actions to improve overall building operational energy efficiency. The measures will save the college nearly $61,500 each year in energy bills.

Honorable mention: Glendale Community College, for its chilled water plant project.

Self-generation projects: Cañada College, in Redwood City, Calif., for its 1.2 megawatt ground-mount solar project. Cañada College will soon begin producing about half of its electricity thanks to the project. In addition to the annual savings of over 1.8 million kilowatt hours or about $219,000, the project will generate the equivalent of 15 jobs for a year.

Honorable mention: Feather River College, in Quincy, Calif., for its solar project.

Deemed Incentive projects: Imperial Valley College, in Imperial, Calif., for upgrades that reduced its natural gas usage. The College replaced its gym and library boilers and its pool heating system, which consumed a large amount of natural gas. The gym boiler replacement will save over 6,600 therms per year and about $8,600 in energy and maintenance costs.

Honorable mention: Santa Monica College, for its library boiler replacement project.

Faculty/student initiatives: Skyline College, in San Bruno, Calif., for the waste diversion efforts of the Green Gorillas, a student-led environmental advocacy group on campus. The Green Gorillas program is to divert waste from landfills and to provide recycling and composting education to students. During a pilot phase conducted at the campus cafeteria, the Green Gorillas taught students and faculty about composting and recycling. Soon after, about 57 percent of cafeteria waste was diverted for composting and 22 percent went to recycling, with just 21 percent sent to the landfill. The Green Gorillas plan to implement their program on a permanent basis at Skyline College and will work toward district-wide adoption.

Honorable mention: College of the Canyons, in Santa Clarita, Calif., for its water conservation and petrochemical devices project.

For more information on how the California Community Colleges is reducing energy usage, click here:

The California Community Colleges is the largest system of higher education in the nation composed of 72 districts and 112 colleges serving 2.1 million students per year. Community colleges supply workforce training, basic skills education and prepare students for transfer to four-year institutions. The Chancellor’s Office provides leadership, advocacy and support under the direction of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges. For more information about the community colleges, please visit: