The University of Maryland is a small city unto itself with a population of roughly 50,000 by day and more than 300 facilities on 1,250 acres. It’s also a major research university with energy-intensive labs, instruments, computing servers, etc. To power this enterprise, UMD relies on a variety of energy sources including wind, solar, and natural gas.
Since 2020, all electricity delivered to campus by regional power plants comes from renewable sources. More than 9,000 solar panels on campus will also contribute to decreasing dependence on fossil fuel. The remaining carbon emissions associated with power will come from the on-campus combined heat and power plant (CHP), which uses natural gas to produce steam and electricity simultaneously.
UMD is updating the campus energy system: NextGen
The NextGen Energy Program (NextGen) is a plan to replace, renew, and modernize the University of Maryland, College Park's aging energy system through a proposed public-private partnership (P3).
NextGen continues UMD’s 20-year, cutting-edge approach to providing creative and sustainable energy solutions through P3s. After extensive research and evaluation, the NextGen Energy Program proposes replacing our existing energy system in a way that is consistent with our core values and best serves our community, now and in the future.
President's Energy Initiatives:
To improve the environmental impact of our energy use, the university has implemented a number of energy reduction and conservation measures. More details about these projects can be found in the Progress Report and the Climate Action Plan. The President’s Energy Initiatives, announced by President Loh in April 2014, encompass some of the major energy projects currently taking place on campus.
- Efficiency upgrades in existing buildings will reduce campus electricity use 20% by 2020.
Carbon Neutral New Development
- New buildings will be designed with high energy efficiency levels, and energy consumption will be zero carbon.
- By 2020, all purchased electricity will come from renewable energy sources.
All Terps can help conserve energy on campus:
- Take advantage of natural light and turn off lights when they’re not in use or when you leave a room.
- Turn off computers and monitors when not in use.
- Look for Energy Star-rated electronics.
- Unplug electronics when not in use.