Tag Archives: energy

Spring update

An update from team member Benjamin Lim:

A system wide change is being underway in the community college system on Oahu. The change is geared towards making all of the community college campuses on Oahu more sustainable. The administration is in the phase of granting Johnson Controls to run an investment grade audit (IGA) on the community college campuses. Johnson Control will take care of the setting up, maintenance, and tracking of the infrastructure that will seek to make the community colleges more sustainable using performance based contracting. In the IGA phase, Johnson Controls have a set amount of time to audit the current infrastructure of the campuses and calculate all the costs to retrofit and install more sustainable infrastructure. After this, they must write it into a budget and present it to the community college’s administration for approval.

One of the stipulations of the contract that has not yet been signed, is that there is a request, as said by Ken Johnson, that there be an educational element to the changes that Johnson Controls would make in their efforts to make the college campuses more sustainable. This being, some steps have already been taken to provide for more education in the efforts for sustainability.

On February 25th, 2010, a group of students shadowed a lighting contracting company that was hired by Johnson Controls while the contracting company performed their own IGA on Building 2 on the HCC campus. At this audit, students learned trade specifics such as what the difference between a bulb an a lamp is, how to identify fixtures, and the difference between magnetic and electronic ballasts. In addition to gaining information on how somebody in the trade is lighting design and retro fitting goes about auditing, the students gained insight as to the environmental impact of using such kinds of lighting in certain situations or the environmental impact of using a particular lighting.

In trying to keep in line with the educational aspect of the community college campus’s change to a more sustainable operation, the HCC team is assigned the task of developing a lesson on lighting auditing. Some of the sections of this lesson are derived from the Sustainable Saunders initiative, and some are in parallel with the material that the students learned by the shadowing of the lighting auditor at HCC on February 25th. The goal with the creation of this lesson is to establish Sustainable UH as an entity that can provide education in terms of specific fields.

GreenCarts Solar Cart Trial Test

Honolulu Community College:  GreenCarts Solar Cart Trial Test

HCC will be testing out a GreenCarts Solar Panel Roof Top to see how adding a photovoltaic system to their golf cart will decrease their energy consumption and help the school reach their sustainability goals.  The solar roof system provides a constant charge to the batteries while the golf cart is under the sun and allows HCC to use free energy from the sun to help run their campus golf carts.

We are currently finishing up the second week of testing the solar panel top on the campus security golf cart. The first week of testing was used to gather kilowatt readings that showed how much energy the golf cart consumed while being recharged overnight.  The second and third week of testing will focus on how many days the golf cart can be used with the solar panel top CONNECTED versus it being DISCONNECTED.

So far John, from campus security, has noticed that the golf cart runs smoother and has more power throughout the day with the solar panel roof.  He also shared that many of the staff and students have noticed the new look of the golf cart and like the concept of adding a solar roof to the school’s golf cart.

Thanks for reading.  I’ll be sure to update everyone after the testing is complete.

Tracy Ogihara
GreenCarts, LLC
Ken Johnson, HCC