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Terry Townsend to speak about “green” initiatives in schools

2/11/2008 —
Penn State Fayette to host event targeted at students, school administrators, community.

As part of the National Engineers Week celebration at Penn State Fayette, The Eberly Campus, internationally-recognized expert Terry Townsend will be talking about green initiatives in schools at a public presentation February 18 at the Maggie Hardy Magerko Auditorium in the campus’ Community Center. Townsend’s presentation begins at 2 p.m.

In his talk, entitled “The Student Challenge: Be an Agent for Change,” Townsend, past president of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE), will discuss how we need to take charge of our global environment, and how students can make positive changes to make a career of saving energy and money and help save the environment.

One of the initiatives that Townsend started last year as the ASHRAE president was to have the members of ASHRAE, who are the world’s experts in building energy use, write a series of Advanced Energy Design Guides, including one for K-12 schools. ASHRAE sent an electronic copy of the K-12 document free to every school district in the nation. It provided information on how school officials could reduce the cost of heating schools while improving the indoor air quality, and possibly increasing student performance. Part of Townsend’s presentation will be to formally present a copy of this document to a local school representative.

Penn State Fayette Associate Professor of Engineering Dave Meredith notes that Penn State Fayette is actively involved as a demonstration site of these concepts. Penn State University will spend about $1 million this year in energy-saving projects that will reduce the campus energy costs by more than $100,000 per year. Even the students in the Building Environmental Systems Technology (BEST) program have jumped on the Sustainable Design bandwagon with some smaller campus improvements. The students plan to install a solar heating system on the campus maintenance building, add a green roof to the campus sunspace, and construct a rain barrel to reduce the summer use of city water for watering flowers.

Townsend is president of Townsend Engineering Inc. in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and Panama City, Florida. A graduate of Tennessee Technological University, he earned his bachelor’s of science degree in 1971 and a master of science in mechanical engineering in 1973.

Students, school administrators, the general public, and individuals interested in the environment are encouraged to attend. The event is free.

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