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Switch Off the Lights

Students show they're energized for saving energy when they take a pledge to conserve at a past 10-week campaign. 

ALBANY, N.Y. (September 1, 2017) – How much energy can you save if you put your mind to it?

UAlbany’s Office of Sustainability thinks 10 percent is a good start.

On Wednesday, Sept. 6, the office kicks off its annual Energy Campaign, a 10-week challenge to the entire University community to reduce energy usage. The goal is a 10 percent reduction from baseline average usage.

Last year the campus as a whole reduced energy usage by 8.2 percent over the 10 weeks, saving a total of 943,306 kilowatt-hours of electricity and reducing carbon dioxide output by 353.05 tons.

This year, we can help bring that total to 10 percent.

How? Turn off the lights when you leave a room. Power down your computer when it’s not in use, and switch off the power-hungry screen saver. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.

In the residence halls it’s even easier to save energy. If it’s warm out, open a window instead of using a fan. If it’s cold, close that window to preserve heat. Closing the blinds or curtains will help keep the heat inside. Don’t overuse the dryers and personal appliances, and turn off lights in common areas that aren’t in use.

This year’s energy campaign begins Wednesday with a “Pledge to Conserve” table from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the fountain near the Campus Center entrance. Office of Sustainability staff and volunteers will have more information about the campaign as well as tips on how to reduce energy usage in campus offices, dorms and classrooms.

Throughout the 10-week campaign there will be tabling evens around specific themes, such as recognizing and turning off “energy vampires,” televisions and other appliances that often stay on low power rather than shutting off completely. There are also mini-campaigns, including Power Down Fridays and Take the Stairs Tuesdays.

Who Can Save the Most?

Quads compete with each other over the 10 weeks to see which one can save the most energy. Last year Freedom Apartments won with a 38 percent reduction in energy usage. Alumni Quad and Empire Apartments each reduced usage by 22 percent during last year’s campaign.

The campaign ends Nov. 12, and the winners and total energy savings will be announced later in the month.

For more information on the Energy Campaign, visit the Office of Sustainability. Click here for the campaign flyer.

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A comprehensive public research university, the University at Albany offers more than 120 undergraduate majors and minors and 125 master's, doctoral, and graduate certificate programs. UAlbany is a leader among all New York State colleges and universities in such diverse fields as atmospheric and environmental sciences, business, criminal justice, emergency preparedness, engineering and applied sciences, informatics, public administration, social welfare, and sociology taught by an extensive roster of faculty experts. It also offers expanded academic and research opportunities for students through an affiliation with Albany Law School. With a curriculum enhanced by 600 study-abroad opportunities, UAlbany launches great careers.