Algonquin College – Where Education and Sustainability Combine for a Greener Future

When Algonquin College made a commitment to become a more sustainable institution for future generations, it turned to Siemens to help achieve its goals.
For more than 25 years, Siemens and Algonquin College have partnered to work towards an ambitious goal of ensuring the college reaches a zero net carbon footprint by 2042.

A perfect partnership

As the first Canadian college to sign the Talloires Declaration, which commits post-secondary institutions around the world to be leaders in sustainability, Algonquin College set out to find a provider that could turn its visions of sustainability into a reality. After a strong bid combining solutions from a number of business units, Algonquin College signed on Siemens and its innovative approach.
John Tattersall, Director of Physical Resources Algonquin College:

At Algonquin College, we want to be recognized as global leaders in providing innovative and sustainable learning environments for our students so they can realize their hopes, their dreams, their aspirations. To do that we want a strategic partner that is a global leader. Siemens Canada is that strategic partner. Siemens not only understood the ‘what’ we were after, they clearly understood the ‘why’ we were after it.

Siemens ingenuity powers the campus

Siemens proposal was bold – a Campus Transformation supported by a Strategic Partnership. The scope included Campus-wide lighting and controls, water conservation, major HVAC upgrades, Demand Flow technology, Central Plant improvements, Building Automation and many other building improvements. The transformation also included a 4 MW cogeneration plant, scaled Solar PV, power storage and EV charging stations controlled by a Siemens Microgrid solution. In addition, an on-site Sustainability Coordinator was introduced to support the communication plan and drive non-technical savings through behavior and cultural change.

  • Building Management System
  • Distributed Energy Systems
  • Distribution/Energy Management Systems
  • HVAC retrofitting financed and guaranteed with an Energy Performance Contracting
  • Energy/Sustainability Consulting
  • Micro Grids
  • Renewable Energy Systems
  • Smart Metering
  • Substation Automation
  • Total Building Solution

A unique energy management system

On top of this extensive renovation, Siemens technology has allowed Algonquin College to create, direct and store its own energy. Siemens microgrid controller sets energy needs from the solar PV and CoGen. They then direct energy to the load, Algonquin College and to energy storage. When needed, the microgrid controller can direct stored energy to Algonquin College.
These improvements have resulted in significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from campus buildings, as well as substantial financial benefits.  Long term, these will add up to tens of millions of dollars in operating cost savings and reduced deferred maintenance costs. In fact, Algonquin College has seen an annual reduction in costs of $3.2 million, which has been put back into improved classrooms and facilities for its most important stakeholder – its students.
To find out more about this innovative partnership, please visit
English: Press Release

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