The school has explored comparatively new territory in another area as well - the installation of a campus-wide cogeneration system. The Duquesne University energy project evolved in the mid-1990s as the university confronted a situation of aging chillers at dispersed building locations. These chillers utilized CFCs and, because of low efficiency, were contributing to rising energy expense. The university began seeking a solution that would address each of these problems.
The university had recently entered into a relationship with Noresco (Pittsburgh), an Equitable Resources Company, to supply bulk natural gas to the school. In February 1996, Duquesne expanded the agreement to address other energy and environmental concerns. At that point, planning for a total campus utility infrastructure, to be managed by Noresco, began.