MFES campuses will require lots of energy and will provide an endless set of challenges for students to tackle. Can a small community become energy self-sufficient? How can the newest solar and wind technologies be made affordable for individual homeowners? In addition to designing and maintaining the energy infrastructure of the community, engineers and students may design and install energy solutions for local clients, perhaps as sub-contractors that enable our students to see how to manage a small contracting operation.
Though eventually the internal combustion engine might not be the prime motivator of most vehicles, it is for the foreseeable future. We envision a business that makes the existing supply of cars as economical as possible: repairing and updating older, fuel-efficient cars and making them available to people who can’t afford newer more fuel-efficient cars; taking older, gas-guzzling vehicles off the road, dismantling and recycling them in the most ecologically responsible way. Another model is ZipCar, a company built on the community sharing of cars as a way to reduce emissions that has worked mostly in urban areas.