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An investment in sustainability

Queen’s is making an important investment in enhancing the sustainability of its operations. Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor, has announced a $10.7-million energy performance contract with Honeywell, an international energy services company.

The contract is the next step in the university’s Energy Matters project, which aims to reduce the university’s carbon footprint and generate annual savings in its utility bill.

“Climate change is a significant global issue and Queen’s is committed to doing its part to improve our environment through its operations,” says Principal Woolf. “The Energy Matters project will help lower the university’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and reduce its water consumption, while at the same time providing important financial savings that make an investment of this size possible.”

As part of the Energy Matters project, Honeywell will implement more than 170 individual energy conservation measures in 66 campus buildings. These include the installation of low-flow fixtures to reduce water usage, upgraded lighting and building climate controls to reduce energy consumption, as well as heat recovery systems and improvements to building envelopes.

Energy Matters fast facts 

  • Total investment: $10.7 million
  • Guaranteed annual utility savings: $946,000
  • Number of conservation measures: 170
  • Number of buildings involved: 66
  • Expected annual reduction in GHG emissions: 2800 MTCO2e
  • Expected annual reduction in water usage: equivalent to 84 Queen’s Centre swimming pools

“Queen’s has been working with Honeywell since 2014, performing energy audits and identifying the most promising energy efficiency measures,” says Caroline Davis, Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration). “With the energy performance contract now in place, Honeywell will begin work on the individual efficiency upgrades in January, with the project expected to be complete in August 2017.”

Once fully implemented, the Energy Matters project will result in guaranteed annual utility savings of $946,000. Queen’s current annual utility costs are roughly $20 million. The annual reduction in GHG emissions is expected to be 2800 MTCO2e, the equivalent of taking 944 mid-sized cars off of Canadian roads. The annual reduction in water usage will be equivalent to the volume of 84 Queen’s Centre swimming pools.

The $10.7-million cost of the project will be funded through the annual energy savings that Honeywell guarantees, with full payback of the costs expected over 12 years.

“This project is a very important initiative for Queen’s that will help the university fulfil its commitment to sustainability,” says Aaron Ball, Sustainability Manager. “It builds on a number of energy efficiency and conservation measures already undertaken by the university and, along with other changes in the energy sector in Ontario, will contribute to an expected reduction in our GHG emissions of 25 per cent since 2008.”

As of 2014, Queen’s had already seen a reduction in its GHG emissions of 18 per cent since 2008. Energy savings initiatives, such as the installation of a high-efficiency boiler in the central heating plant and lighting upgrades, contributed to this reduction.

Honeywell’s environmental and energy services division has been providing guaranteed energy performance contracts in Canada for more than 28 years. The company has delivered more than $4 billion in annual savings around the world and is experienced working in post-secondary institutions and hospitals, including Kingston General Hospital.