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A success story in energy conservation

By Megan McNerney
On December 1, 2009


Have you been taking the time to read the EnergyWi$e weekly tips and reports submitted to you by e-mails from David Wilmes? While it may seem that we, as undergraduate students, receive an influx of unimportant e-mails daily, and it may be tempting to merely delete several items before reading, it is imperative that we review the initiatives of this pilot program. The program was started by the Campus Office of Sustainability, and graduate student Rob Fox (working with EnergyWi$e) recently partnered with Smith's own Society for Green Business to reduce energy usage in Van Munching Hall. 
While the Office of Sustainability focuses on several areas of energy conservation, such as reducing the usage of elevators and automatic doors, the SGB's primary focus is on reducing the use of lights in the classrooms of VMH. In order to accomplish this goal, SGB's Advocacy Committee (Tian Tian Feng, Cara Blumenthal, and Alyson Theobald) has generated a schedule of when each classroom is occupied and posted signs on the doors to remind both professors and students of when they can turn off the lights. Have you noticed these signs? Better yet, have you taken the advice given on the signs? If not, it may be helpful for you to read the weekly reports attached at the bottom of David Wilmes's e-mails telling exactly how much money was saved due to reduction in light usage. The results are quite astounding! The Society for Green Business and the Office of Sustainability have put a great deal of effort into this massive project known as EnergyWi$e, but they cannot do it on their own. By helping them out, we can reduce the money spent by Smith and increase the opportunities provided within our business school with the money saved by energy conservation. Consult your local classroom signs for ways to help!

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