Facing the possibility of a dire budget situation, Kansas University has hired an outside firm to help improve its energy efficiency.
Craig Hansen, KU energy program manager, said the university has hired Energy Solutions Professionals, of Overland Park, to conduct an energy audit and assist with potential upgrades to university facilities.
He estimated the cost of the contract at $100,000.
Hansen said the firm would scour 4 million square feet of buildings on the Lawrence campus looking for ways to improve lighting, heating and cooling systems, water conservation and automation.
“We’re continuing to try to make improvements wherever we can,” Hansen said.
After the audit, he said, the firm would provide the university with a list of projects that would improve efficiency, along with the estimated savings and cost of implementation.
The university would select the projects it could complete with available funds, and the firm would assist in finding contractors to perform the work.
“That gives you a really good idea, once you get done with the audit, as to what kinds of opportunities are there,” Hansen said.
Hansen said a similar audit in 2001 resulted in savings of more than $900,000 per year.
He said he hoped the audit would be completed by early January. Ideally, Hansen said, the university could institute many different programs with the most efficient windows, lighting and heating and cooling systems available. But in a tight budget year, that won’t be possible, he said.
“You have to try and find the things that give you the best value,” he said.