The first solar panels were installed at the University of Eastern Finland Kuopio Campus in the summer 2016.
There are 78 solar panels with the peak power of 260 WP (Watt peak) each installed on the roof of the Melania building. The total combined capacity of the panel system is 20.28 kWp. In 2019, the solar panels generated 14,500 kWh of solar energy, which is equivalent to approximately 80 per cent of the energy need of an electrically heated 120 square metre single-family detached house. The university has also assessed other potential locations for solar panels on its campuses.
The university uses 100% renewable electricity.
As of 2018, the University of Eastern Finland has been using electricity that is 100 per cent generated from renewable energy sources. The total consumption of energy in 2019 was 20 900 257 kWh, which is equivalent to the amount of energy consumed by around one thousand electrically heated 120 square metre single-family detached houses. The renewable energy sources used to generate the electricity consumed by the university were 48.9 per cent water power, 49.6 per cent bioenergy, and 1.6 per cent wind power.
As of the beginning of 2020, demand-side management (DSM) has been applied in the university properties for balancing the energy consumption of devices and systems owned by University Properties of Finland Ltd. DSM enables the use of green energy and increasing the used of renewable energy in the university properties, while also reducing the carbon footprint of buildings.
Energy savings are gained through the use of LED lights and lighting control systems.
The university has invested in LED lights in several buildings and outdoor lighting systems on the university campuses. Only LEDs are purchased, and whenever existing lighting solutions need repairing or replacing, the lights are changed to energy saving LEDs. The control and timing of lighting systems is based on the availability of natural light.
Environmentally efficient solutions were used and sustainable space planning and purchasing were chosen when building the Rantakylä Teacher Training School in Joensuu.
The Rantakylä Teacher Training School commissioned in early 2019 is a highly eco-efficient building. For example, buildings with energy-efficient structural solutions and an effective heat recovery system are rated in energy efficiency class A.
At the Joensuu Campus, the reduction of emissions from energy consumption is accelerated with the climate partnership commitment that the university has concluded with the City of Joensuu.
By signing the commitment, the university has agreed to, for example, increase the percentage of renewable energy sources used to generate district heating for the buildings in Joensuu Campus to 80 per cent by 2025.