The loan will be paid off through the resulting energy savings, said Len Sereda, director of facilities management at the U of A. And when the debt is repaid in 10 years, the U of A will realize savings on its annual energy bill, projected to reach $34 million this year.
As high as that figure is, if it weren't for the Energy Management Program, the cost of utilities would be $13 million higher--clocking in at $47 million, he
"The point of it is that it is money in the university's pockets," said Sereda
, who added that, while there is a loan to repay, other immediate benefits arise.
"There are many other benefits we are achieving as we go along: it's infrastructure renewal--we're putting in a lighting system with a 25-year lifespan--it reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and it contributes to sustainability," he
"Essentially, every light fixture is going to be replaced," said Geoff Hurly, associate director of operations and energy management, who added that the change will result in about a 50 per-cent drop in energy use. U of A Dean of Science Dr. Gregory Taylor
has seen first-hand the effect of the conservation program.