Algonquin college, Canada

A perfect place to shape a greener tomorrow. Innovative technology and new ways of thinking from Siemens are making Algonquin College a sustainability role model #CreatingPerfectPlaces
A perfect place to shape a greener tomorrow

Clean energy future for Algonquin College, Canada

Algonquin College is Ontario’s fourth largest college with about 20,000 students in Eastern Ontario. Algonquin College is a leader in sustainability across global academic institutions and has a zero net carbon footprint goal for 2042.


The College is working towards its goals of Reducing its Ecological Footprint, Pursing Economic Strength, and Enhancing Student Success, as part of the College Sustainability Strategy Framework. Algonquin College was looking for a partner to help it create and deliver its vision for greener, cleaner future.


Siemens helped Algonquin College launch the ESCO2 project. It is based on a 20-year Energy performance contract, within the scope of which Siemens delivered a number of infrastructure upgrades (from HVAC retrofits to Chiller plant optimization or Building automation control optimization).

The partnership goes further however: Siemens also helped Algonquin college not just cut its energy use, but also its carbon emissions. This was achieved through Distributed Energy Systems, in the form of a natural-gas-fired cogeneration plant, along with micro-grid technology. All of which enables the college to create, direct and store its own energy. Last but not least, Siemens is supporting the college’s educational mission by providing new research opportunities for the students: All the technology is on display, turning the college into a living lab in which Siemens experts are also teaching students about sustainability, through a new graduate certificate program that enables specialization in the subject.


The project has delivered savings of USD 3.2 million, and 1,200 tons of CO2 annually. Over the long term, these will add up to

tens of millions of dollars in operating cost savings and reduced deferred maintenance costs. Among key milestones in recent years, the college opened four state of-the-art, high-performance buildings between 2011 and 2014. Three have either achieved or are targeting Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Gold certification. One has attained a LEED® Platinum certification.

“Our next step is to reduce our greenhouse gas use even further. Ultimately, I envision us running off some alternative fuel sources, and Siemens already has some thoughts on how we can do that which is very exciting.”
Todd Schonewille, Director of Physical Resources, Algonquin College (source:ref. flyer)

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