Energy efficient dorm rooms don’t have to be dark and depressing, with lights always turned down low to save on expenses. They don’t have to be cold in the winter and wasting energy when they’re unoccupied during the summer. But the balance between student comfort and energy efficiency can, understandably, be difficult to maintain.
One way to help accomplish this is to get the students involved.
Many universities have departments dedicated to energy management or “green” interests. Energy Star recognized an advantage here, and established a Showcase Dorm Room project that helps students get in the habit of developing strong sustainability practices from a young age. Tulane University, in New Orleans, provided the case study upon which this project was built.
The purpose was to show how utilizing Energy Star labeled products could increase energy efficiency, and thus save universities money. By creating a buzz around the project, attracting local publicity and the attention of the government (which, in this day and age, is turning a wide eye on sustainability ventures and sometimes offering tax exemptions or grants to colleges that go “green”), the students at Tulane University estimated that their “showcase” room could save $130 per year in utilities. Considering the almost 2,000 dorm rooms on campus, that’s a lot of saved dollars.
But those simple steps aren’t the only ones that can be taken toward a brighter, more efficient future. Energy assessments, audits of past utility bills, and in some cases, retrofits can pay massive dividends. Technologies exist that can automate temperature controls depending on occupancy or pre-programmed schedules. And if your buildings operate in a state where electricity and natural gas has been deregulated, an experienced team of energy management consultants can not only procure for you a cheaper source and negotiate the contract, but also track and monitor usage over time to consistently identify new methods of saving.
But it all starts with that first step. Some universities are afraid of taking it, afraid to risk sacrificing student comfort. With a dedicated team of consultants like Stanley Energy in your corner, the risk is eliminated. For a free consultation, and to begin making your dorm rooms energy efficient—or increase their current level of efficiency, call us at 603.689.7083 today.