University of North Texas

Division of Student Affairs

UNT Sustainability

GreenSense

UNT has 100% renewable electricity

This landmark accomplishment was made possible by the We Mean Green Fund (WMGF), which provides the opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to make their campus more sustainable. Through a proposal to the WMGF, UNT has enrolled in Denton Municipal Electric’s GreenSense Renewable Electricity Program, which will purchase Renewable Energy Credits (RECs) to cover the electricity use at the UNT main campus and UNT’s Discovery Park campus.

What is a Renewable Energy Credit?

RECs are the currency of renewable energy.  When 1 MW of electricity from renewable sources such as wind or solar is delivered into the grid, a REC is generated.  RECs can be sold to others that are interested in supporting renewable energy, and by purchasing a REC, the purchaser owns the renewable energy that was delivered to the grid.  REC ownership allows people and institutions to claim that electricity used is from renewable sources with low or zero emissions.

 

UNT Is a Leader in Green Energy

The University of North Texas is enrolling in the US EPA’s Green Power Partnership, a leaderboard for institutions committed to renewable energy purchasing. UNT is projected to rank #1 of universities in Texas, #9 of universities nationally, and #63 of all public or private institutions.  

Be a Leader in Green Energy Too!

Beyond supporting renewable energies on campus, UNT also hopes to serve as a leader in the community and encourage others to support renewable energy.  Denton Municipal Electric (DME) account holders are also able to enroll in the GreenSense program.  Contact DME Utilities Customer Service at 940-349-8700 to learn more and enroll.

If you are interested in learning more about this project, renewable energy, or the WMGF, please contact WeMeanGreen@unt.edu.  Instructors - We will be happy to provide classroom presentations tailored to the content of your course.

What Is the Impact of UNT’s Enrollment?

UNT’s green energy prevents Carbon from entering the atmosphere equivalent to:

  • 7,919 average residential homes
  • 15,841 passenger vehicles driven for one year.
  • 179 million miles driven by an average passenger vehicle. Enough to drive from New York to Los Angeles 64,430 times, or around the world 7,217 times.
  • 23,800 TONS of waste recycled instead of landfilled. 
  • Switching 2,658,417 incandescent lightbulbs to LED.
  • 173,627 barrels of oil. 
  • 3 million tanks of propane.

How many trees would it take to sequester this much carbon?

  • 2 million tree seedlings grown for 10 years.
  • 70,990 acres of US forest. One tenth the land area of state of Rhode Island.

FAQs

Does UNT produce this energy on site?

No, the renewable energy is not produced on site.  The energy is produced by off site turbines and solar arrays, and the energy is delivered into the grid.  UNT purchases the renewable energy credits that certify the energy production and give UNT ownership of the green energy

Why is UNT purchasing RECs rather than pursuing on site production through solar arrays or turbines?

It is true that on-site green energy production would be ideal, however, the capital investment and logistical constraints of producing the electricity to power UNT is not feasible in the short term.  REC purchase allows for 100% renewable electricity immediately.

What about the renewables we already generate on campus?

The RECs and on site production complement one another. Renewable energy from UNT’s turbines and solar panels continue to provide electricity on campus, and reduce the need for energy from the grid.  The REC purchase ensures that the energy from the grid is from renewable resources.

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