Utility Costs | LSU Facility Services

Utility Costs


Electricity for the campus comes from two sources, a campus generator and Entergy. The cost for billed electricity is the total cost to produce electricity via the campus generator and purchased electricity divided by the total electricity used by the campus. A small mark-up is added to help cover the cost of maintaining the electrical distribution system.

The cost of producing electricity on campus includes natural gas costs, generator plant maintenance costs, lease costs on the generating plant equipment, plant operating labor costs and supply and service costs.


Natural gas is supplied primarily by Pontchartrain Natural Gas, with back-up by Entergy. Pontchartrain Natural gas sells gas at the monthly market price plus a transportation and delivery fee. LSU can elect to lock-in a fixed price and quantity of gas for future use. This helps to stabilize gas prices. 

The price for natural gas is the sum of the cost from Pontchartrain and Entergy divided by the total gas used. A mark-up is added to help cover the cost of maintaining the natural gas distribution system.


Water is supplied by Baton Rouge Water Works. Due to the volume of water used by LSU, the rate is fairly inexpensive. The rate is determined by the total cost divided by the total use plus a mark-up to help cover the distribution system maintenance costs.


Sewer service is provided by the East Baton Rouge Sewer Commission. Since LSU uses water for a variety of purposes, some of which do not end up in the sanitary sewer system (steam production, cooling towers, irrigation, swimming pools, etc), LSU receives a reduced rate. This reduced rate is passed on to users on the campus chilled water and steam systems. Non-central plant users pay the standard rate charged by the East Baton Rouge Sewer Commission.

The charge is fixed for one year (July – June) based on the average water use in the previous year’s October, November and December and the current year’s February, March and April. The rate currently increases 4 % per year.  This is a pass through cost and no mark-up is used.  Please note that the cost of sewer service is considerably more than the cost of water.

Chilled Water

Chilled water is produced by the Central Plant.  The chillers used to produce chilled water operate using electricity, natural gas or steam. The Central Plant operators work to use the most cost efficient combination of chillers to meet the chilled water needs of the campus.

The rate is determined by totaling the costs divided by the total chilled water produced. The costs include electricity, water, natural gas, steam, lease payments on the equipment, labor, water treatment chemicals and other supplies and services. There is no mark-up on these services. The BTUs used by the customer is metered via the Campus Building Automation System.


Steam is used for space temperature control, domestic water heating, by food service and in laboratories. The cost for steam is the total cost to produce the steam divided by the gross area using steam pro-rated with the hours of use. The individual customer is charged based on the gross area heated multiplied by an hours of use factor. Non-heating seasonal use is reduced due to less heat being used by the customer. The cost to produce steam include natural gas, electricity, water, lease payments on the equipment, labor, water treatment chemicals and other supplies and services.

Hot Water

Residential Life facilities are charged for domestic hot water if it is produced by steam or unmetered gas. The use is estimated based on occupancy. The occupant count is provided by Residential Life. The cost is for the BTUs to heat the water and does not include the cost of the water. The cost will vary based on the current price of natural gas.