UNCW Makes $4.5 Million Upgrade Pay for Itself
In a collaboration with energy solutions provider Brady, the University of North Carolina Wilmington is making a $4.5 million facility upgrade pay for itself. The project includes a performance contract that guarantees more than $333,000 in annual energy savings, a total of $8.9 million over the 20-year life of the contract. The improvement to mechanical and lighting systems in 10 campus buildings is part of the university’s ongoing commitment to being environmentally responsible.
In this performance contract, Trane Comfort Solutions Inc, assumes the financial risk of the project, enabling the UNCW to use future energy savings to pay for up-front costs and eliminating the need to use capital-improvement budgets to upgrade systems. UNCW’s performance contract with Trane Comfort Solutions Inc. guarantees that if energy savings projections are not achieved, Trane Comfort Solutions Inc. will write the university a check for the difference. Energy savings audits and financial reconciliation will be conducted annually.
This the first performance contract with the UNC System that includes the use of day lighting as an energy savings strategy. Solar tubes will be added to Randall Library. Other improvements that will increase energy efficiency and/or reduce water consumption include the replacement of boilers, connecting additional buildings to the central energy plant, new temperature controls, new air handing equipment, and lighting upgrades.
Annual Salary Survey
After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.
The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.