New Mexico State University: a case study in sustainability

09/01/2015 |

By Ellen Sajdak

Product Manager

Elkay®

A college campus is filled with people trying to do the right thing.  joni newcomer, sustainability manager at New Mexico State University, is one. She’s been carrying the same canteen for 10 years. When she first encouraged students to fill their own bottles, however, there was a hitch.

“I would see them trying to fill up, pressing the little button, angling their bottle, trying to get the water from the regular drinking fountain into their bottles. And you could see their frustration.”

One student volunteer in a group heard about the ezH2O® and started a rally. A local plumbing company donated the first station, and installed it in the activity center where students hang out and work out. joni remembers, “It was such a big hit.” And not just with parched students.

“It's almost like the entire University Facilities and Services Department, just as a whole said, ‘You know what? This is a good idea.’ I never had to talk anyone into anything.”

Administrators love the savings. And joni tells us about the plumber who may be ezH2O’s biggest fan, especially when he can avoid fixing tired old fountains.

“Changing the filter is easy. Everything is easy. I kept egging him, ‘You sure? There’s really nothing you’d change?’ And he goes, ‘Nope! Love them.’”

Three years later, NMSU is home to 34 Elkay ezH2O bottle filling stations. They estimate more than 527,000 bottles saved, which equals more than 21,600 pounds of 16.9 ounce bottles. This saves “tipping fees,” the cost each time a load of trash is “tipped” into a landfill. Overall, NMSU has achieved a 70% diversion rate, the percentage of waste that does not end up in landfills.

The next generation ezH2O bottle filling station will hit campus later in 2015. The primary focus of her job is saving energy, so joni likes how the cooler can be programmed to turn off during times of non-use such as weekends or nights.  Since she currently walks the whole campus to add up bottle savings, she also looks forward to the new cloud-based counter. Students, faculty and staff are excited, too.

“They’re constantly calling, ‘What can we do to get a new bottle filling station in our building?’ I’m like, ‘Well, you can break the existing one.’ Wink, Wink.”

joni does tell them she’s kidding.

Find out more at Elkay.com/ezH2O

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See how professionals like you are taking advantage of the highest performing precision cooling system for their computer rooms and data centers, and why Data Aire is fast-becoming the number one choice for facility managers and building owners looking to decrease their energy consumption. 

Data Aire understands how digital technology and data gravity is rapidly impacting and transforming businesses. That’s why they developed ultra-efficient cooling technology to support the most modern (and not-so-modern) data centers.  Learn how One Wilshire in Los Angeles, one of the most advanced carrier hotels today, is surpassing California's strict energy efficiency requirements with Data Aire’s purpose-built system, which provide full-economization for 260 days – almost 72% of the year. That’s a measurable savings! Furthermore, the projected PUE on an annual basis for a full load is at or below 1.2.


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