More than 265,000 students at 109 colleges and universities, schools and campuses across the U.S. and Canada. For they collectively saved over 2.2 million kilowatt-hours of electricity.
Using Lucid, the Center for Green Schools at the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the National Wildlife Federation and the Alliance to Save Energy announce that For that’s equivalent to averting 3 million pounds of CO2 from the atmosphere. In addition it’s also saving $196,000 through the Campus Conservation Nationals 2014 (CCN) contest.
This year, students also saved nearly 476,000 gallons of water. I mean that’s the equivalent of 1.8 million water bottles.
From Feb. 3 to April 25, students, faculty and staff unplugged unused electronics, took shorter showers and turned off lights in common areas to see which campus buildings could reduce the most energy and water use.
Participants organized events, utilized social media and launched creative marketing campaigns. Especially to motivate their peers to take personal actions and encourage change in building operations. Through thousands of direct actions and collective effort, CCN participants demonstrated that personal actions can significantly reduce energy use. Finally and advance the sustainability of their schools.
The top 10 schools in electricity reduction were:
- Appalachian State University
- Bard College
- Berea College
- California State University Chico
- Dickinson College
- Louisiana State University
- Loyola University Maryland
- Portland State University
- Wake Forest University and Western Carolina University
That’s most noteworthy and with an average energy reduction of 17.2 percent.
Moreover, the top five schools in water reduction were:
- Oberlin College
- Pomona College
- University of California Santa Barbara
- University of Wisconsin Milwaukee
- Wake Forest University.
That’s with range of reduction of 4 to 17 percent.
Participating schools used Lucid’s Building Dashboard® to compare performance, share winning strategies and track standings.
“As CCN continues to grow and expand, we are amazed at the impact students and staff are able to make,” said Chelsea Hodge, director of product engagement, Lucid. “These students are demonstrating that creating a culture of conservation and inspiring individuals to change their behaviors can significantly reduce their campus’ carbon footprint.”
Nearly half of schools elected to participate in the group competition. That’s competing campus to schools to universities to save energy and water. With 13 group competitions this year made up of schools competing regionally or within standing rivalries, the spirit of competition heated up. However, Appalachian State University not only won its group competition against Western Carolina University. However, both schools were in the top 10 for energy reduction.
“We had a lot of fun with Western Carolina through social media and in pointing out different strategies,” said Donna Presnell, communication coordinator, Appalachian State University. “It was a good, friendly competition with them. You can now stop any student on campus and they’ll be able to speak to you about sustainability initiatives on campus.”
An optional CCN 2014 poster contest offered a $500 grand prize and four runner-up prizes to the schools with the most innovative outreach posters. Columbia University won Best Poster for its efforts to reduce energy in the residence calls — “I commit to power down” — with more than 700 votes from CCN participants. Penn State University won second, third and fourth place for its posters featuring tips to reduce water and energy with eco-friendly washing, and Dickinson College came in fifth place with its “Lights Out” poster.
With generous support from United Technologies Corporation, founding sponsor of the Center for Green Schools at USGBC, CCN gave students and staff an opportunity to organize and make immediate and lasting impacts on their school’s carbon emissions and campus culture. “It is exciting to see students and staff engaging with energy and water use on their campus,” noted Taylor McAdam of The Alliance to Save Energy. “A huge opportunity, both educational and financial, is missed when students aren’t incorporated into campus utility use.”
To learn more about the program, visit CompeteToReduce.org., Washington, D.C., and Oakland, Calif. — (May 5, 2014)