Colorado State’s Green is Gold Energy Conservation Efforts Continue to Expand as Earth Day Approaches

Colorado State University celebrates Earth Day by continuing to expand energy conservation projects that reduce energy use, water use and pollution across campus, as well as saving the university many thousands of dollars annually. University investments in conservation projects in 2005 will provide an estimated yearly savings of $500,000.

Some of the highlights of the Green is Gold campaign include new lighting and water conservation projects. Fluorescent lights and ballasts at the James L. Voss Veterinary Teaching Hospital are being converted to more energy-efficient units. The lighting’s energy use will be reduced by about 20 percent with an estimated yearly savings of $22,100 and reduced greenhouse gas emissions of nearly a half-million pounds of CO2.     

One visible energy conservation project that has been completed over the past year involved replacing 1,090 existing exit signs with energy-saving LED exit signs. The LED lights use between two watts and five watts of energy per sign as compared to the 20 to 40 watts needed for traditional exit signs. This project is expected to save the university roughly $12,900 per year in electric costs and more than a quarter-million pounds of CO2.

The Pathology and Physiology buildings have gone through recommissioning processes. This process is essentially a building tune-up where adjustments are made building equipment resulting in energy savings. The two-building project is estimated to save $25,000 in energy costs per year.

Water savings kits have been installed on 37 autoclaves. The kits reduce the amount of water required by the autoclaves for cooling. On average, each kit is saving about 39,000 gallons of water per month. The projected savings is estimated to save more than 17 million gallons per year for a savings of $60,700 per year to the university.

Energy and water conservation is encouraged to become a routine habit for all students, faculty and staff. As Earth Day approaches, Colorado State encourages everyone to partake in energy conservation.

The following are a few general tips to help conserve energy.

– Wear an extra layer of clothing rather than using a space heater in residence hall rooms, offices and labs.  

– In warm weather, wear lighter-weight clothing in air conditioned buildings. Do not open windows.

– Turn off any lights or electrical equipment (stereos, radios, computers) when not in use.

– Power down computers to their resting state. Most modern computers use almost no energy when not in use. However, no energy is saved in "screen saver" mode.

– Use the stairs. Get the blood pumping and save energy at the same time.

The following are tips to help conserve energy in on-campus housing.

– If every student on campus shortened his or her shower by one minute, the university could save over $20,000 per year in energy and water costs.

– If rooms are too hot, talk to your resident advisor and/or call 491-7171. Opening a window wastes heated air to the outside.

The following are a few general tips to help conserve energy in classrooms and offices.

– Report extremes in temperature by calling 491-0077, but be prepared for a warm or cool environment by layering clothes.  

– Turn off teaching equipment (projectors, computers, etc.) when not in use.

– Turn off lights in empty classrooms or offices.

– Do not study in a classroom by yourself.  Study in areas with others to maximize lighting efficiency.

The following are a few general tips to help conserve energy in labs.

– If equipment is not required, turn it off.

– If water is not required, turn it off.

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– Remember that vent hoods do waste heated air to the outside but are there for your protection. If you are using the hood, lower the sash to the proper position. When you are finished working at a fume hood, lower the sash to the minimum opening position.

– Turn off unused lights.

– Switch unused computing equipment into "sleep mode" if it does not do so automatically.

Residence hall comments should be directed to (970) 491-7171. Suggestions and comments for other campus buildings should be directed to Facilities Management at (970) 491-0077.