'Hurst continues 'green' efforts by going 100 percent wind

One major issue facing the world today is climate change. Mercyhurst College is doing its part to help by investing in 100 percent wind power.

The announcement to go 100 percent wind was made during the college’s Earth Week celebration.

Mercyhurst has been striving to go green with the Green Team, having recycling bins on campus, the “Earth tube” and the Senior Gift of the green roof on Zurn Hall.

Wind power is the next step to being green.

“Combined with prior investments in geothermal and solar energy, and our ongoing efforts to improve energy efficiency and conservation, Mercyhurst’s move to 100 percent wind power illustrates the commitment we have made toward our long-term goal of carbon emissions neutrality,” President Dr. Thomas J. Gamble said.

Going 100 percent wind power starts off by purchasing all the electricity from the regional wind farms, a project that is financially backed by Community Energy.

The plan to use only wind power has been in place for a while.

The college purchased the initial wind energy at 10 percent seven years ago. This amount was increased to 30 percent in 2008 and now 100 percent in 2010.

The college will pay $10,000 less annually for energy by using 100 percent wind.

Some students may wonder how having energy produced only by wind will affect how they use energy around campus.

In fact, not a lot will change.

Dr. Chris Magoc, the Green Team chair, explained, “It will work as it has for the last seven years – the lights and computers will continue to come on whenever we flip the switch, but we can do so now with the good feeling that at all times, the restless power of the winds that blow across this planet are powering this campus. This is a profound expression of the Mercyhurst commitment to global responsibility.”

Mercyhurst will be the fifth college in Pennsylvania to go 100 percent wind.