Warren Wilson College — Swannanoa, N.C.

Challenge & Solution

“Any way you look at it, it’s domestically produced and I think that’s something to tout. The cost is less volatile than gasoline, so you can bank on a pretty stable cost for running your machinery.”

Tom LaMuraglia

Head Landscape Supervisor

Warren Wilson College, located in Swannanoa, NC, has placed a focus on sustainability practices and programs since the early 2000s when campus leaders actively sought ways to reduce its carbon footprint. It started a trial program through a partnership with a local propane retailer that included propane-powered landscape maintenance equipment, which dovetailed nicely with the college’s already-established environmental goals and required minimal financial investment. After experiencing positive results in the form of reduced emissions and equipment that was easy for student workers to operate and maintain, the college chose to continue using propane maintenance equipment. It even found additional opportunities to expand the versatile fuel’s use on campus.

Equipment Fleet Profile

  • 2 60” Toro Propane Commercial Mowers
  • 2 Suzuki Mini-Trucks
  • 1 Ventrac Tractor
  • 1 Propane Forklift
  • 1 Utility Vehicle Converted To Operate On Propane
  • 1 Onsite Propane Refueling Station

Warren Wilson College’s Propane Highlights

  • Propane equipment reduced greenhouse gas emissions by more than 15 percent.
  • Propane equipment reduced carbon monoxide emissions by more than 40 percent.
  • The propane equipment has been easy to operate and maintain by the student crew.
  • Saved $1,000 on each propane mower purchased with the Propane Education & Research Council’s Propane Mower Incentive Program.

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