08-29-19 | Education

U. of Arizona Teams with Power Company for Clean Energy

The Agreement is a 20-Year Partnership

U. of Arizona Teams with Power Company for Clean Energy

UA and Tucson Electric Power's 100 percent clean energy project paves the way for a new era of renewable energy.


The University of Arizona has partnered with Tucson Electric Power to provide the campus with enough power from solar, storage and wind systems to meet 100 percent of its purchased power needs.

"We made a commitment to become a more sustainable campus, and now we have in place a system that will make a significant impact in just two years," University of Arizona president Robert C. Robbins said. "I believe it is up to higher education institutions to lead the way on clean energy solutions. This university is already a leader in environmental and sustainability research, and we found a partner in TEP that shares our commitment to make effectual change. We have a forward-looking team to make these changes a rapid reality."

Officials say the agreement is subject to approval by the Arizona Corporation Commission. If approved, UA would become the largest research university in the U.S. with a plan in place to offset all of its scope two emissions, which include greenhouse gases resulting from the generation of electricity, heat or steam purchased from a utility provider. Scope two emissions are indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy.

"We're proud to support the ambitious renewable energy goals of president Robbins and the University of Arizona, which are consistent with our own aspirations," TEP president and CEO David G. Hutchens said. "We're working together with our customers to build a sustainable energy future for our community."

As part of the 20-year agreement, TEP will dedicate portions of two new renewable energy projects to meet the energy needs of UA, including a New Mexico wind farm and a solar-plus-storage system southeast of Tucson.

"We have been researching a way to implement 100-percent green energy, and this deal gets us there in one fell swoop," UA assistant vice president of Facilities Management Chris Kopach said. "This project provides capacity for consistent and reliable power with capacity for decades of growth in Tucson and on campus; the kind of capacity needed by a Research I university."

Sign up for
LAWeekly newsletter. Get exclusive content today.