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Sustainability at Mills

Energy

What We're Doing
Mills is constantly exploring new ways to decrease our dependence on fossil fuel based energy. Some of our initiatives are highlighted below.

Mobile Solar
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. (Please contact ngaetjens@mills.edu if you would like to be added to the mailing list for electric and plug-in hybrid vehicle drivers who want to share feedback on the EV charging stations.) Additionally, these solar generators increase emergency preparedness at Mills by providing additional backup power.

Green Buildings
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. 

Learn more about the Natural Science Building's sustainable features here.

Learn more about the School of Business and Public Policy's sustainable features here.

Energy Efficiency
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.

What You Can Do

  • Turn off or unplug your extension cords and other cords when not in use. Even when your electronics are turned off, they still use some power when plugged in, called "vampire power." Learn more about vampire power here
  • Keep your window shades open when the sun's out to allow heat into your room, and leave your shades closed when sunlight isn't hitting your room to keep the heat in your room from escaping. 
  • Submit a work order for broken heating dials, light switches, and other fixtures at Mills.
  • Use Energy Star rated products. The EPA rates appliances, office equipment, and other products with Energy Star when they have a specified level of energy efficiency. The EPA also maintains an inventory of Energy Star products.

Additional tips on saving energy can be found on the PG&E website.

 

Overview

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Contact Information 

Nicole Gaetjens
Sustainability Coordinator

ngaetjens@mills.edu
510.430.3224

Alisha Strater
Farm Manager

astrater@mills.edu
510.430.2230

Green for Green Fund:
greenforgreen@mills.edu

Sustainability Committee:
green@mills.edu

Re-Use Depot
reusedepot@mills.edu

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Last Updated: 7/19/17