Performing arts building at dusk.
Performing arts building at dusk.

PGE Helps Illuminate Reed With Green Energy

Portland General Electric grant puts solar panels on the PAB

By Kevin Myers | February 17, 2020

Solar panels were installed on Reed College’s performing arts building with the support of a grant from Portland General Electric (PGE) Renewable Development Fund. The fund is generated by PGE customers who opt in to the Green Future program to support renewable energy. The college’s solar project is one of 61 current projects developed with Green Future funds with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas consumption.

When combining the performing arts building solar array with the others on campus, including the recent array on Reed’s newest LEED Platinum Certified residence hall, Trillium, Reed’s total potential solar generating capacity is 286.3 kW with another 37.1 kW array planned for installation later this spring. 

A real-time monitor installed on the second floor of the performing arts building (PAB) shows up-to-date accounting of solar power generated and greenhouse gasses offset. The monitor can also be viewed from the PAB website

In  2013, Reed dedicated $5.4 million to implement changes to minimize energy use by maximizing equipment life and adjusting building management. Since that time, Reed has realized an annual equivalent CO2 emissions reduction of 2,647,750 pounds per year. In addition to CO2 reduction, these changes resulted in more than $250,000 annually in energy-, water-, and maintenance-related savings. Annual savings:

  • 1,241,925 kWh
  • 4,463 kW
  • 112,954 therms of natural gas
  • 5,607,008 gallons or 7,496 CCF (1 CCF = 100 cubic feet) of water

With the generous grant from PGE’s Renewable Development Fund, Reed will continue to lower its carbon footprint and will strive to incorporate ideals of sustainability into the operations of the college and the daily lives of individuals on campus.

Tags: Climate, Sustainability, Environmental, Institutional