Cornell's Lake Source Cooling project wins prestigious New York Governor's Award for Pollution Prevention

Cornell University's Utilities Department has won the 2001 New York Governor's Award for Pollution Prevention in the institutional/educational category for the university's Lake Source Cooling (LSC) project.

The project, which was launched in 1994 and began operating in 2000, will be honored Jan. 14 at a ceremony at 1 p.m. at the offices of the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC), 625 Broadway, Albany, N.Y. The award will be presented to Cornell engineers by DEC Commissioner Erin M. Crotty. Three other Governor's Awards, to small and large businesses, also will be presented.

LSC uses cold water from the depths of Cayuga Lake, one of the Finger Lakes in upstate New York, to cool a separate water supply that is pumped to the Cornell campus and circulated to cool campus buildings. LSC uses 86 percent less electrical energy than the aging system of water-refrigerating machines, called chillers, that it replaced, reducing the amount of pollution released into the atmosphere from the burning of fossil fuels by electric generating plants.

William S. "Lanny" Joyce, chief engineer and team leader of the LSC project, who will accept the award on behalf of the engineering team involved in its creation, estimates the cooling project has eliminated the need for some 20 million kilowatt hours per year, or enough power to serve 2,500 homes, while preserving and protecting Cayuga Lake.

"Use of lake source cooling provides a passive and technologically simple cooling option for Cornell University, using a natural, nonpolluting and renewable resource," says Joyce. "It is designed and operated with great care to protect the lake."

Others from Cornell attending the ceremony will be Robert R. Bland, university environmental engineer and director of environmental compliance; Patrick O. McNally and Sarah C. Zemanick from the environmental compliance ofÞce; and Charles Kruzansky, associate director of government affairs. The Governor's Award recognizes institutions and companies that voluntarily go beyond the requirements of compliance with anti-pollution legislation. The DEC also is honoring the LSC project because of its highly innovative nature and because the technology easily can be transferred to other institutions, which is one of the main criteria for selecting winners.

Cornell also won a Governor's Award in 1996, for dealing with trafÞc congestion and parking demand on campus.

Also next week, Joyce will be accepting the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Technology Award for the LSC project. He will accept the Þrst-place award in the alternative and/or renewable energy use category on behalf of the Cornell design and construction team at the society's 2002 Winter Meeting in Atlantic City, N.J.

Earlier this year, LSC was named by the New York State Society of Professional Engineers as the society's outstanding engineering achievement of the year. Cornell's chilled-water cooling and its steam heating and electricity cogeneration also were named District Energy System of the Year by the International District Energy Association.


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