It is easy to sign a Resolution; they are meaningless unless you actually have a solution. If you can “talk the talk, why not walk the walk” show you are serious by doing something to back up your words.
Feather River College should make it a goal to transition this campus into Zero Net Energy by 2030. The push is for Zero Net Energy and then “all electric” buildings maintaining a campus of 100 percent renewable microgrid resources. This will lead to a Zero Net Energy Source, electrification, Zero Carbon, and a grid friendly campus.
It should be the goal of the President to develop and execute a multiyear carbon neutrality or “zero” emissions campus as part of his goals.
The Board of Trustees was completely dismissive of my solar panel inquiry last meeting. Their reasoning was it is too expensive.Okay … so climate change is super important but we’re not prepared to put our money where our mouth is? We can talk the talk but won’t walk the walk?
Create a microgrid. A microgrid is exactly what it sounds like: A compressed version of the larger electrical grid that powers our country. The electrical grid exists to supply our electricity demand, ensuring that the two are balanced and connecting electrical supply to electrical demand with the transmission and distribution system. In practice, a microgrid works in the exact same way, just for a smaller geographic area, like a couple of buildings or a local community.
To meet the electricity demands of its users, a microgrid must have a generation source. Given that microgrids are an older concept, the electricity supplied to microgrids has historically been from “behind the meter” fossil fuel generators — gas-powered generators, for example. However, with the falling cost of solar, not to mention the environmental benefits of switching from fossil fuel generation to solar power, many of the microgrids being designed today supply electricity with a combination of solar plus battery storage.
Microgrids are capable of becoming electrically isolated from the grid in the event of an outage. When the grid goes down due to anything from a severe weather event to a knocked over telephone pole, you need to be disconnected from the grid–or “islanded” — in order to continue to produce and use electricity. As such, one key feature of a microgrid is its ability to continue operating even when the larger grid goes out. Net Zero Energy the state that exists when the amount of energy provided by “on-site” renewable-energy sources is equal or equivalent to the amount of energy used.
Conduct Baseline Audit of Resource Utilization
A comprehensive audit of the energy and water resources used throughout the campus building spaces should be completed. There are a number of sustainability initiatives that will lower FRC’s dependence on energy and water, and lower the District’s operating costs for agriculture irrigation pivots. Solar PV Arrays covering parking lots could save thousands of dollars in energy per year to FRC’s general fund. Other projects include but are not limited to LED lighting upgrades. Disallowing the use of “nonessential” hydrocarbon emission vehicles on campus. We should transition to monitoring-based commissioning, and HVAC controller upgrades. Monitoring based commissioning is the process of collecting, storing, analyzing and reporting data (collected through sensors) to optimize equipment performance and efficiency. Grants are available for this “Climate friendly” transition.