The University of North Texas (UNT) football stadium will be powered by wind energy for the 2012 football season and beyond. UNT was awarded a $2 million grant from the State Energy Conservation Office to install three 100 kilowatt wind turbines that will feed the electrical grid that powers the football stadium along with several other buildings on the west side of Interstate 35E coined the “Mean Green Village.” The new stadium will open in September and will be the first collegiate stadium to use onsite renewable energy.
“The effort by the staff of the UNT System and the university to meet the requirements of the Department of Energy and the State Energy Conservation Office to win the grant for these new turbines underscores our commitment to creating a carbon-neutral campus,” said V. Lane Rawlins, president of UNT. “Our university has a 50-year legacy of environmental research and sustainability and we’re proud to be the first university in Texas to install wind turbines on campus.“
This community scale wind project will be monitored through a web-based monitoring system and provide details on energy production, carbon reduction statistics and empirical data that can be used for educational and research purposed. The UNT System will also be seeking LEED Gold or Platinum certification. If the project is awarded LEED Platinum, it will be the first of its type to achieve this rating in the country.
“The construction of wind turbines at UNT will be an invaluable asset to the university and surrounding communities,” said Richard Escalante, vice chancellor for administrative services. “The reduction in carbon emissions from the use of fossil fuels will be a collective benefit for the entire North Texas region. Sustainable initiatives, such as the use of renewable energy technologies, ensure that future generations of the UNT and Denton communities are equipped with the necessary tools to continue economic expansion while simultaneously protecting the environment and human health.”