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Rhoades energy-saving rebate part of bigger, brighter picture

Oct. 31, 2013 9:58 AM | Author: Greg Vanney
Bob Werkhoven (right), Valley City mayor, presents a check for $43,027 to Ron Pommerer (left), VCSU facilities services director, and VCSU President Steve Shirley on behalf of Missouri River Energy and the Valley City Public Works Department at City Hall Oct. 18.

Bob Werkhoven (right), Valley City mayor, presents a check for $43,027 to Ron Pommerer (left), VCSU facilities services director, and VCSU President Steve Shirley on behalf of Missouri River Energy and the Valley City Public Works Department at City Hall Oct. 18. 

Missouri River Energy Services, in cooperation with Valley City Public Works, presented Valley City State University an energy rebate check of $43,027 for purchasing energy-efficient equipment for the addition to and renovation of Rhoades Science Center.

Administered through Missouri River Energy’s Bright Energy Solutions program, the rebate check for VCSU was based on the installation of several types of equipment in Rhoades Science Center, including:
  • • new lighting with high-efficiency bulbs
  • • a new HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system
  • • occupancy sensors and timers to dial back lighting and air-handling controls
VCSU will use the $43,027 rebate to make future energy improvements across campus.

The Rhoades Science Center equipment recognized by the Bright Star Energy Solutions program is just one component of Valley City State University’s continuing efforts to save energy and conserve resources throughout the campus.

The renovation and addition to Rhoades Science Center were designed to meet LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards where possible. In addition to the energy-saving measures qualifying for the Bright Star Energy Solutions rebate, other LEED considerations in the building included:
  • • reuse of the existing Rhoades building
  • • installing improved insulation at existing and new exterior walls
  • • incorporating materials which had recycled content
  • • diverting construction waste from the landfill
  • • installing low-flow water fixtures and dual-flush toilets
  • • use of recycled materials and materials with recycled content in construction
  • • use of certified wood in construction
  • • use of energy-rated, double-glazed windows
  • • use of low-emitting, low-odor finishes, including all paints, adhesives and flooring
  • • use of native and adaptive plantings in landscaping
  • • providing bike racks and changing rooms
  • • creating no additional parking lots
The Rhoades project is not the sole facility where VCSU has taken action to conserve energy. In a summer 2012 remodel of the university’s Student Center cafeteria, equipment updates including new ovens and warmer plates resulted in energy savings. Installation of LED bulbs in the recessed lighting in McFarland and Foss halls has also generated savings.

External lighting throughout the VCSU campus has been improved as well with the installation of new fixtures featuring energy-efficient LED bulbs, which have a much longer bulb life and use less energy. The new bulbs also generate more light than the incandescent bulbs they replaced, helping create a well-lit, safer campus.

“When we do something here, we’re always looking for ways to save,” said Ron Pommerer, VCSU facilities services director. “With the new equipment and fixtures, we realize both operational savings in terms of energy use and also manpower savings with less required maintenance and longer life cycles.”
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