Campuswide email: Feb. 2, 2015

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students,

To strengthen our sustainability efforts, Ohio State is considering an innovative energy strategy that also could provide new resources for our academic mission.

The university is exploring a private partnership for comprehensive energy management that could provide benefits in the following areas: energy conservation, energy supply (securing the best rates), operations (leasing our energy infrastructure) and affinity (support for teaching, learning and research).

Over the last 90 days, we’ve introduced the project to faculty, staff and students and have been encouraged by their interest. We have held in-depth discussions with the President and Provost’s Council on Sustainability (PPCS), the University Senate-appointed Council on the Physical Environment (COPE), and an energy management faculty advisory group.

We’ve used their input to shape a Request for Qualifications that will help us identify and evaluate potential partners. That document will be released this week. When companies respond, we’ll again ask PPCS, the faculty advisory group and COPE to share their insights.

I encourage you to work through these groups to ask questions and provide input as this process continues. Each group represents a different area of expertise to ensure we are considering a broad perspective as we evaluate this project. If you have questions about the charge of each group or how best to engage them, please contact Vice Provost Jennifer Cowley (, who is serving as the coordination point from the Office of Academic Affairs.

In addition, we have established a project website:, which will be updated as new information is available. You can also email your questions or comments to throughout the project.

We expect to have an update by the end of spring semester. I look forward to further discussions and additional engagement with the university community as our work on this project progresses.


Joseph E. Steinmetz, PhD
Executive Vice President and Provost