Kill-A-Watt: A Campaign to Increase Energy Efficiency on the Columbia University Campus

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Environmental Action: Getting Started

Shavanna, Jen and I are doing research of the market and possible ebergy saving techniques independently from each other. In our opinion, the more information will be collected the better overall picture we will have. If we have a clearer idea as to the science behind the energy efficiency, we will be able to make better choices on the economic implementations of our campaign.

I came across some energy efficient appliances. The prices are exorbitant; however, it is possible to bring them down if we make a deal with the company to buy in bulk or establish a rental service (more revenue for them, less energy used for us).

We might aolso consider using gable fans in the beginning of the fall term and in the end of spring, especially in the Quad. From my experience as a first-year, I remember it being increadibly hot, and my roommate and I having out fans on almost 24 hours a day. We could cut energy usage for those by installing gable vents that do not require any electrical input.

There are many computers on campus. Computers in the computer labs are never turned off, libraries and student recreational centers (like McIntosh or Lerner) are never turned off. If we can not make the administration turn them off completely, we could ask them to reduce the number of computers working 24 hours a day or at the very least make them shut off the monitors during the night.

Although some energy devices seem more energy efficient (halogen lamps, for example), they might not be acceptable for a different reason (halogen lamps are fire hazards, and are prohibited in Barnard residence halls). We will try to work with Barnard facilities to establish environmentelly-friendly, energy-efficient and, hopefully, low-cost solutions. We are also trying to get in touch with companies who have already done work in this area (for example, Energy and Environment, Inc ( do environmental consulting. They have worked with various colleges all over the nation, and saved them millions of dollars. However, they might be reluctant to supply the information to us without any monetary return, but we are trying to at least obtain some information.)


This page has been created and published by a Columbia University student, faculty or staff member as part of course or other requirements. The ideas and information expressed in this publication have not been approved or authorized by Columbia University, and the University shall not be liable for any damages whatsoever resulting from any action arising in connection with its publication. Columbia University is not responsible for the contents of any off-site information referenced herein.