Energy Conservation


One of the main sources of energy consumption for students is computers.

  1. Don't leave a desktop PC on in your room when you're not there.
  2. Turn off your room lights when you are away for any period of time.
  3. Turn off common area lights, like in bathrooms, lounges and classrooms when no one is there. The next person can just as easily turn them back on. Make sure that others in your space know about this rule too.
  4. Unplug cell phone chargers when they're not charging your phone. That little black box means it's still drawing power.
  5. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.

At Work

Energy conservation at work balances time and resource efficiency and eliminates unnecessary use of electricity. Most of these suggestions revolve around eliminating the low but persistent power use when a machine is in standby mode.

  1. Turn off your computer when away from your desk for more than an hour, and at the end of the day.
  2. Turn off the lights when you are the last to leave a room.
  3. Agree to a rule that the last person should turn off the lights and powers down shared equipment.
  4. Have a meeting to determine if Physical Resources can power your area down overnight and on weekends.
  5. Take the stairs instead of the elevator.

In the Lab

Equipment and schedules may be complex, but there's plenty of ways for equipment to be used more efficiently. 

Fume Hoods

Fume hoods are essential pieces of safety equipment, but they also vent conditioned (heated or cooled) air from the building. To prevent this, the sash should be kept closed when it's not in use.  Also, when using a fume hood, you should use the smallest practical sash opening.

Equipment Use

If you can share equipment, minimizing the number of machines being used is a great way to reduce energy consumption. Co-operation between labs and research projects can conserve energy and extend equipment life.

Scheduling equipment to run during off-peak periods can help reduce the impacts the electricity has.  "Off-peak" in Ontario is between the hours of 10:00 pm and 7:00 am.  Running equipment off peek reduces the need to bring additional generating stations online.  This sort of schedule management is most important in the summer in Ontario, since peak periods coincide with high need for air-conditioning.