University of Maine – Presque Isle Recognized for Climate Leadership

The University of Maine Presque Isle receives Second Nature’s 1st Annual Climate Leadership Award for Institutional Excellence in Climate  Leadership. Award recipients were recognized at the 4th Annual American College & University Presidents’ Climate Commitment(ACUPCC) Summit in Denver, CO on October 12th.

In 2009, the University of Maine at Presque Isle (UMPI) became the first university in the state of Maine to install a mid-size wind turbine on campus.  After talking with the US Department of Energy about wind power, the University worked with the University of Massachusetts at Amherst’s Renewable Energy Research Laboratory and determined the project was fiscally feasible. After a suitable contractor had been found and all permits secured, University officials announced in November 2008 that they were moving forward with the project. By spring of 2009 the turbine was completed and began to produce electricity.

The 600 kW wind turbine has produced 680,000 kilowatt-hours of electricity in its first year, creating more than $100,000 in annual energy savings and keeping an estimated 572 tons of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere. The turbine is maintained by students from Northern Maine Community College and has four objectives: provides stable investment in clean electricity; helps to meet the requirements of the ACUPCC; is part of UMPI’s educational mission; and serves as a community resource.