Pennsylvania Environmental Resource Consortium to meet Oct. 2
Sept. 29, 2009
Harrisburg, PA – HACC, Central Pennsylvania’s Community College, will host the annual conference of a statewide environmental organization of colleges and universities on Oct. 2 on the Harrisburg Campus. The Pennsylvania Environmental Resource Consortium (PERC) is an alliance of 56 Pennsylvania higher education institutions, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR). HACC is the only community college in the consortium.
“We were very pleased to accept HACC’s invitation,” said Josh Hooper, acting associate director of PERC. “Green buildings, green classes, there’s a lot of ‘green’ going on at HACC.”
In addition to its longstanding environmental sciences program, HACC’s curriculum is evolving to offer credit courses in green technology and alternative energy sources, as well add green technology components to existing courses. The college already is offering noncredit courses in green technology.
The conference is being held in HACC’s Midtown Campus, a brownfield redevelopment of the former Evangelical Press Building at Third and Reily streets. HACC’s Green Center will be housed across the street at Campus Square, a four-story building with a 42.5 kilowatt solar system on its roof.
Workshops planned for the conference include “Green house gas reduction strategies on campuses,” “Helping PERC schools finance solar energy,” “Higher education support for community energy work,” and “Reducing energy demand on campuses.”
PERC serves its member institutions in a variety of ways, including sharing information and best practices among member campuses and working with other environmental organizations to stimulate environmental awareness on campus.
In addition, PERC worked with DEP and Community Energy to create a market for wind power in Pennsylvania. PERC also partnered with the Sustainable Energy Fund to create the Solar Scholars program. 
This year’s projects, according to Dr. Richard Bowden, Allegheny College, PERC chair, are focused on energy conservation and efficiency as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions on campuses and in their surrounding communities. Another focus this year is building solar energy on campus.
The PERC conference, hosted by HACC is made possible by generous support from Community Energy, Pace Controls, PECO, and Viridity Energy. 
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