Energy Reduction

Branson KW Demand Ameresco Project 9.8.14

Ameresco interior lighting retrofits save university money!

Branson Library energy chart (above) shows lower kw usage.”


Light Emitting Diode (LED) street lighting on Geothermal Drive has the capability to save approximately $465 annually with ten new fixtures as compared to the older high pressure sodium and metal halide streetlight.  Also, due to the long life of LED bulbs, the maintenance costs are greatly lowered.” 30% of the energy consumed in buildings is either used inefficiently or is unnecessary.” –EPA

Energy Reduction Campaign

The Office of Sustainability strives to reduce energy consumption at NMSU by focusing on energy efficiency in our buildings and in our operations.  In order to do this, we have developed an Energy Reduction Campaign, which is an awareness and behavioral modification program with the goal of reducing energy consumption on campus as a way to reduce energy costs while helping the environment.

Strategies of the Energy Reduction Campaign include:

  • Collaborating with each of the College Deans and Department Heads
  • Developing educational programs aimed at students, faculty, and staff
  • Education on “Vampire Energy” and the importance of turning off monitors, lights, chargers, etc. to lower NMSU energy consumption

Light Switch

The College of Education has their own Green Team for their various buildings across main campus. They designed their own stickers for their light switches to remind occupants to turn off their lights when they leave the room. If you’d like to start your own Green Team for your building contact joni newcomer, Manager Office of Sustainability.


FS Energy Reduction

Facilities and Services (FS) has been working on energy reduction for quite a few years through the following ways:

  • Incorporating more efficient use of power generation at the Central Utility Plant such as:
    • turning off certain chillers during the day when the energy costs are high and then running them for chilled water storage at night when the energy costs are 1/5 of that during the day
    • replacing old fans and motors in Heating Ventilation Air Conditioning (HVAC) units with new energy efficient motors
    • using the Niagara Energy Supervisor system to monitor the energy use
  • Installing meters in our buildings that monitor use of electrical energy, chilled water, natural gas, and domestic water
  • Constructing LEED buildings for all new buildings and remodels over 15,000 square feet
  • Replacing incandescent and outdated “T12” fluorescent lights with either compact fluorescent lamps (CFL or T8) or LED’s (light emitting diode) where possible
  • Through a rebate program with El Paso Electric, NMSU has gotten checks for over $113,000 by doing things such as updating swamp coolers in family housing and replacing old energy-hog refrigerators with EnergyStar® refrigerators, and upgrading lighting
  • Housing replaced 10,000 old incandescent bulbs with energy efficient CFL’s in 2010 thanks to El Paso Electric
  • We are working on getting an ESCO (Energy Services Company) for an “Energy Performance Contract”.  This allows a consultant to survey campus for all types of energy reduction strategies that has the potential to save the university millions of dollars.

What you can do on campus and in your personal life to cut energy costs:

  • Turn off equipment such as monitors, computer peripherals, microwaves, coffee machines, and fans when not in use
  • Unplug items to eliminate “Vampire Energy” (i.e., power consumed while electronics are turned off but still plugged in)
  • Replace incandescent lighting with either compact fluorescent lamps (CFL’s) or LED (light emitting diode) bulbs
  • Turn off the lights in your dorm rooms, offices, and classrooms when not in use
  • Buy EnergyStar® appliances and computers

The Office of Sustainability is currently working to expand these efforts through building a comprehensive behavioral modification plan to be implemented across our university.

Below are links to a flier for the Energy Reduction Campaign and a graph showing campus energy use over time from 2008 to 2011.


Click image to view full size PDF


This graph shows the energy savings that has occurred over the last six years due to energy saving techniques performed by the operators at the Central Utility Plant.