Thinking Green at ICF


A solar panel array installed by H&H Solar provides electricity for our intern and guest housing at ICF.

This winter, snow removal has been at the top of the list for ICF’s Site Management team, and thanks to their efforts ICF’s human and bird flock have had a very safe winter. But it’s their behind-the-scenes “green efforts”, led by ICF’s Site Manager Dave Chesky (left), we would like to highlight this month.

We’ve compiled a list of improvements that ICF has made over the last year to manage our energy and water use – we hope that these ideas inspire you to make similar changes at your home or office!

• Installed two, 2-button flush toilets in two of our most frequently used restrooms, which reduces water consumption by about half the amount used by a conventional 1.6 gallon flush toilet.

• Installed 5-watt LED outdoor lighting fixtures at five different main building entrances, which use about 1/5 of the power used by the more common compact fluorescent option and have a much longer lamp life.

• Installed a very highly efficient Carrier brand heating and air conditioning system in the Guest House.  This system incorporates an air source heat pump, which provides the heating for the building down to an outside temperature of about 25 degrees and reduces operating costs significantly.  The highly sophisticated controls for this system maximize energy savings.

• Installed two new hot water heaters, one in the library and one in the main office building.   Both units are very efficient due to their superior insulation system and were both downsized to be more in line with the actual hot water usage in each of these buildings.

•  Installed a motion sensing light switch in our Donnelley Education Center for the track lighting in both exhibit rooms. This not only saves energy by not having the lights on when there are no visitors in the building, but also saves energy by reducing the amount of time the air conditioning must run to maintain a comfortable temperature during the summer months.

Learn about the “green” features incorporated into ICF’s Spirit of Africa exhibit design, including solar panels, rain barrels, native plantings and recycled glass walkways.

Learn more about ICF's Travel Green Wisconsin designationDid you know that ICF is a Travel Green Wisconsin Destination?

When you plan your trip to ICF this summer, check out other area attractions that also focus on environmentally friendly business practices.