Library First Project Under U of G's Energy Conservation Initiative

May 29, 2008 - News Release

In the spirit of Ontario's Energy Conservation Week, the University of Guelph is announcing plans to upgrade the entire library with higher-efficiency lighting.

Energy Conservation Week runs from May 25 to 31 and is aimed at spurring Ontarians to think about conservation in preparation for the summer peak demand period.

The lighting upgrades will be the first project to be launched under the University's energy conservation initiative — a student-funded program aimed at improving energy efficiency on campus.

Undergraduate and graduate students have committed to providing more than $5 million over the next 12 years towards the initiative by contributing roughly $10 a semester.

Faculty, staff and alumni have also committed to the project, giving more than $36,000 to date and making pledges through to 2013 that exceed $1.4 million.

The University will match all of the money raised, earmarking the funds for energy conservation measures, which may range from lighting and heating to water efficiency and retrofitting.

The library was chosen as the first place to upgrade because it consumes a large amount of energy. The building is open late into the evening and must be lit throughout while in operation, said Lloyd Cummins, the University's department head for energy and utilities.

"Physical Resources, the library and students all contributed to the selection of this project and will all benefit from the improved lighting conditions, cost savings and environmental benefits," said Cummins.

This first project will cost $950,000 and will involve replacing the library's overhead lighting, the exit signs and the lighting running along the bookshelves with higher-efficiency bulbs and lamps. Cummins said in some cases, this will require replacing entire fixtures.

These upgrades will result in an estimated annual saving of 2,077,000 kilowatt hours.

Also, to encourage the University community to conserve energy throughout the year, the Sustainability Program is relaunching its monthly tips on energy and sustainability in At Guelph.

For media questions, contact Communications and Public Affairs: Lori Bona Hunt, 519-824-4120, Ext. 53338, or, or Deirdre Healey, Ext. 56982 or

University of Guelph
50 Stone Road East
Guelph, Ontario, N1G 2W1