Behavioral changes, green building design, and energy efficiency upgrades can minimize the amount of energy we consume in our day-to-day activities. However, renewable and alternative energy sources, such as co-generation, wind, solar, biomass, and geothermal, will be critical in reducing Harvard's environmental impact beyond what is possible from demand-side reductions alone.
Harvard has installed a number of renewable energy systems including solar photovoltaics, ground source heat pumps, and uses biodiesel for 75 trucks and vans in the Harvard fleet. Renewable energy uses renewable sources of power (e.g. sun, wind). Alternative energy may still be fossil-fuel generated, but it uses the inputs more efficiently or recovers waste heat or energy (e.g. co-generation, waste wood burning, heat recovery).
Harvard currently invests in renewable energy by installing and operating a number of on-site renewable energy projects, and purchasing renewable energy credits (RECs) to meet the requirements of the Massachusetts Renewable Portfolio Standard.
Latest News: In 2012, Harvard's largest solar project -- a 600kw array on the Harvard Athletics Gordon Indoor Track building -- came online. Click here to read about the project in the Harvard Gazette or click here to view real-time statistics of energy savings from the project.
Map of Renewable AND ALTERNATIVE Energy Installations at Harvard
To view these projects, visit the online Harvard Campus Map and choose the sustainability layer.
LIST OF RENEWABLE AND ALTERNATIVE ENERGY Installations at Harvard
Installations Which Generate Electricity
Co-generation (also known as Combined Heat and Power or CHP)
- Blackstone Steam Plant. Size: 5.6 MW. Average production: 14.8 million kWh/year. Approximate MTCDE savings in % of FY10 total: 2.3%
- Malkin Athletic Complex Pool. Size: 75 kW. Average production: operating less than one year
- Doubletree Hotel. Size: TBD. Average production: TBD
- 311 Arsenal Street (owned by a distributer). Size: Two 75 kW units. Average production: 563,689 kWh and 38,283 therms (2011 data)
- Blodgett Pool. Size: TBD. Average production: 300,000 kWh/year
- HBS Shad Hall. Size: 75 kW. Average production: 600,000 kWh/year.
Solar Photovoltaic (PV)
- Harvard Real Estate Arsenal Mall. Size: 501 kW. Average production: 590,000 kWh/year (584,700 kWh in 2011)
- FAS Science Center. Size: 10.8 kW (plus a small lighting panel). Average production: TBD
- HBS Shad Hall. Size: 36.5 kW. Average production: 35,000 kWh/year
- Harvard Forest. Size: 10.2 kW. Average production: 12,000 kWh/year
- HGSE Gutman Library. Size: 4.8 kW. Average production: Operating less than one year
- Gordon Track and Tennis Complex. Size: 600 kW. Average production: Installation in Spring 2012. Click here for real-time stats.
Roof-mounted Wind Turbines
- Soldiers Field Park Garage. Installed Capacity (kW): (2) 10KW Bergey Wind Turbines. Average Annual Production (kWh): 20,000 kWh
- Holyoke Center
Installations Which Reduce the Use of Utilities and Fuel
Geothermal Energy (Ground-source Heat Pumps)
- 1 Francis Street: (13) 1 ton water source heat pumps, (2) 1500 foot open geothermal wells, (Heating and cooling)
- 2 Arrow Street
- 46 Blackstone Street: (2) 30 ton water source heat pumps with titanium plate and frame heat exchangers, (2) 1500 foot open geothermal wells, (Cooling only)
- 90 Mt. Auburn Street: (5) 30 ton water source heat pumps, (3) 400 to 600 foot open geothermal wells, (Heating and cooling)
- Quadrangle Recreation and Athletic Center
- Radcliffe Gym: (2) 35 ton water source heat pumps with titanium plate and frame heat exchangers, (2) 1500 foot open geothermal wells, (Heating and cooling)
- Weld Hill Research Center at Arnold Arboretum: (11) 35 ton water source heat pumps, (88) 500 foot closed vertical geothermal wells, (Heating and cooling)
- Radcliffe Byerly Hall: (5) 35 ton water source heat pumps with titanium plate and frame heat exchangers, (4) 1500 foot open geothermal wells, (Heating and cooling)
Solar Hot Water
- 2 panels at 3 Sacramento
- Canaday Hall Solar Thermal and Steam Heat Recovery System
- 472 Broadway. 542.5 sq ft of collector area/19,867 kWh annually
- 20 Prescott. 1017 sq ft of collector are/46,936 kWH annually
- 6 panels at Blackstone North – domestic solar hot water – for North and South
- 20% soybean oil, 80% diesel in 75 diesel fuel vehicles
- Waste wood burning for heat at the Harvard Forest
- GreenRev program uses human energy to produce electricity (spin class bicycles tied to generators which are tied back to the building grid) at HBS Shad Hall
- Heat recovery from the steam tunnels – Canaday Solar Hot Water and Old Quincy