Wells Installs 30,000-Gallon Liquid Propane Tank

5-23-13 - The project will lower the College’s carbon footprint and heating costs beginning in the first year.

This spring, Wells College buried a massive 30,000-gallon liquid propane tank and converted one of its 2 fuel oil fired steam producing boilers to liquid propane to capture savings in energy costs and to support its current efforts for a cleaner environment. The purchase of the tank, piping, and boiler conversion was achieved through a contract with Phelps Sun Gas, a local propane company that’s been supplying the Finger Lakes region since the 1930s.

Wells College’s Director of Facilities and Operation, Brian Brown, began working to gain administrative and municipal approvals in October of last year. The efforts culminated in the successful installation of the tank in March, followed by the physical plant conversions and operation on liquid propane gas in mid-April.

This conversion is already providing saving for the College on heating costs. The savings are not only expected to completely pay the cost of the conversion project in the first fiscal year, but also to provide an additional savings of nearly 20% on the annual college heating energy cost. At current rates, Wells expects to see a savings of 40% annually for plant fuel after the first year.

Additionally, this change provides environmental benefits. Propane emissions are lower than oil by 30 percent or more, lowering the College’s carbon footprint and impact on the local environment. Propane is not classified as a greenhouse gas, is nontoxic to soil and water and dissipates in the air due to its extremely low boiling point (-43.6 degrees Farenheit).

This project is part of the College’s ongoing efforts to lower the campus carbon footprint and reduce energy consumption.



David Foote, communications associate, 315-364-3460, dfoote@wells.edu