Energy Consumption and Costs

Faced with rising fuel costs, Clemson Facilities strives to conserve energy and promote energy initiatives across the campus. Clemson is committed to reducing total energy consumption by 20% by 2020. As seen from the charts below, Clemson has had a steady decline in energy consumption since 2007 despite the increase of gross square footage of building space on campus. Unfortunately, due to the volatility of energy pricing, the energy reductions may not always translate into savings.   

Campus Energy Consumption 2000-2011 Bar Graph

Energy Consumption
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Campus Energy Cost Graph

Energy Costs
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Even though our fuel costs have traditionally been increasing, the Utilities budget has been drastically decreasing. Given these circumstances, Utilities is compelled to find ways to decrease energy consumption, increase renewable energy sources, retrofit inefficient electrical systems, and promote energy initiatives.


Real Time Energy Usage

Facilities is currently pursuing installing infrastructure that will enable students to see real-time energy usage statistics on campus.  The dashboard will allow users to drill down to specific buildings, see historical data on buildings, and see in real-time the impacts of upgrades made by University Facilities to decrease energy usage.  With the dashboard, residence halls can compete in competitions in energy reduction and see the impact of the choices they are making.

Coming Soon Dashboard Clemson

Energy Mix

As of 2011 we have stopped burning coal, and as outlined in the Clemson University Climate Action Plan the coal fired boiler will be replaced by 2015. Our electricity is purchased from Duke Energy to support the main campus operations. Other fuels are purchased to support the Central Energy Facility (CEF) which is also on campus and operated by Utilities. The CEF houses 3 boilers, 4 chillers, and 2 gas turbines among other equipment.  Boiler fuels include natural gas and fuel oil.  The turbines are fired by natural gas. 

In addition, research is underway to determine the cost-effectiveness of building a Biomass gasifier to use to generate steam from natural waste (like waste wood and landfill materials) to supplement steam production at the Central Energy Facility.

Below is a graph of Facilities' Energy Mix in 2010 and 2012.  As the graphs show, practically all of the coal capacity that was lost by shutting down the coal boiler was replaced with natural gas.


Clemson FY 2010 Fuel Mix compared to Clemson FY 2012 Fuel Mix