Powering our campus efficiently and with energy generated from renewable sources is a core part of the College’s commitment to sustainability. Through campus initiatives, infrastructure updates, and environmentally conscious development, the Mills community is embracing a greener future.
Mills is constantly exploring new ways to decrease our dependence on fossil fuel-based energy. Some of our initiatives are highlighted below.
Mills is the first college in a national program to deploy mobile solar generators on campuses in partnership with solar company DC Solar Freedom. Mills has deployed 12 solar generators so far and is contracted to deploy up to 18 more units, each with approximately 50kWh battery capacity. Many of these solar units are connected to services including electric vehicle (EV) charging stations, LED light towers, and personal device charging work stations. Additionally, these solar generators increase emergency preparedness at Mills by providing additional backup power.
The two most recently constructed buildings on the Mills campus have both obtained certification through the US Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) program. LEED certification includes four levels: Platinum (highest), Gold, Silver, and Certified. The Betty Irene Moore Natural Science Building received a LEED Platinum certification, using 89% less energy than a typical Bay Area lab and obtaining about one third of its electricity from rooftop solar. The Lorry I. Lokey School of Business and Public Policy received LEED Gold certification, and features numerous conservation strategies such as a green roof and automatically adjusting window shades.
Mills is committed to certifying all future new construction to the LEED Silver level at minimum.
Mills has made substantial energy efficiency upgrades to our boiler systems and food service equipment. The College is also continuing to expand the use of efficient lighting systems, including timers, motion sensors, and internal and external LED lighting. Behavior change campaigns include the Power Down Days program, with educational outreach to reduce energy use during targeted times.
Additional tips on saving energy can be found on the PG&E website.