Colorado State First University in the United States to Offer Choice of Wind Power to Campus Residents

In fall 2004, Colorado State University will offer students living in the residence halls the option of purchasing wind power. According to Western Resource Advocates, Colorado State is the first university in the nation to allow on-campus residents to choose wind energy.

Colorado State, a land-grant university located in Fort Collins, Colo., with 25,000 students, now will offer the approximately 5,000 students living in residence halls the option to purchase 100 percent wind energy for their rooms at a cost of $17 per year. Typically, a student living in a residence hall uses about 1,600 kilowatt hours of electricity during their nine-month stay.  

Electricity in this region of the country is generated primarily from coal-fired power plants. Every student choosing to purchase green power will help avoid burning approximately 2,000 pounds of coal and prevent 3,680 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions.  

An ad-hoc wind power committee consisting of Colorado State students, staff and faculty; City of Fort Collins Utilities Wind Power Program staff; and members of the community developed this wind power initiative. However, the committee acknowledged that the success of this initiative was due primarily to the dedicated effort of the students who were committed to the idea of bringing wind power to Colorado State.  

"Everyone benefits from the option of purchasing wind power," said Britta Schroeder, a forest management major who has been helping with the initiative. "It provides on-campus students with a choice about their environmental impact while cutting back on harmful pollutants and promoting sustainability."

An initiative indicating the students’ support for offering wind power on campus was passed by the Associated Students of Colorado State University and the Residence Hall Association. After the initiatives were passed, ASCSU members met with University Housing and Dining Services officials who agreed to offer the program beginning this fall.

"Now that the resolution has passed, we are really excited about providing the option for future residents to use wind energy to benefit the environment," said Thea Rinard, RHA president and a sophomore studying liberal arts. "It’s a step in the right direction and a fair option for those who decide to support the program."

Students who will be living in residence halls beginning fall 2004 can look for the wind power flyer in packets to be mailed out this summer. In addition, students will have the option of signing up once they arrive on campus in the fall.

"We welcome Colorado State to our Wind Power Program," Fort Collins Utilities general manager Michael B. Smith said. "It’s inspiring to see such support from the students. Being the first university to allow on-campus residents the option to purchase wind energy is an honor."

For more information about the Fort Collins Utilities Wind Power Program, visit, contact them via phone at (970) 221-6700 (TDD 224-6003) or e-mail at