The MSUM HVAC Department is implementing a new program in the campus building automation system to help cut back on energy costs.

Based on the previous fiscal year, the average monthly electric demand charge from Moorhead Public Service is $58,000 and the average electric charge is $50,700. The new heating and cooling changes are being implemented to reduce the demand charge by five percent.

How the new automated program works: After HVAC staff determine ‘set points’ for maximum electrical usage, certain ventilation and air conditioning equipment will be slowed or shut off for a brief period of time when approaching the set demand limit. Equipment is selected based on assigned priority levels. Equipment is not selected in any specific order but is selected by the automated software program. The brief, periodic adjustment will help to reduce the demand charge by lowering the peak usage level each month.

While the program will impact all buildings on campus, certain special needs areas will not be affected. The program began in mid-April and will continue throughout the year. Modifications to the system will be made on an as-needed basis.

The anticipated energy savings will translate to significant cost savings and will help contribute to making MSUM a ‘greener’ campus.