University of California, San Diego
March 25, 2003
SUBJECT: Campus Energy Update
I am sure most of you have experienced surprise at the current high prices of gasoline at the pump. This increased cost of gasoline is indicative of the price increases seen in the overall energy marketplace, and the UCSD utilities budget is being affected in the same manner as your personal pocketbook. Increased natural gas and electricity rates as a result of the state's experiment with electrical deregulation and the nation's increased reliance on natural gas are having a major impact on the campus utilities budget, even with the increased efficiencies provided by the campus cogeneration system.
This Notice is intended to increase awareness and reiterate the campus' energy conservation policy. The campus automatic load shedding program that was implemented during the summer of last year is still providing energy savings. This program has been scaled back while Facilities, Design & Construction, Physical Plant Services, Environment, Health & Safety, Campus building users, and an outside energy analysis firm provide input that will allow refinements and increase effectiveness. The program will again go into full implementation before the summer utility rate structure goes into effect at the end of April. Analysis is also being performed to develop lighting and motor retrofit projects for our older and energy-intensive buildings.
Major efforts for voluntary conservation are needed to help reduce energy costs. As a "rule of thumb," the efforts that have the most impact on the budget for the everyday campus energy user, without interfering with critical research activities, are turning up thermostats during the hot part of the day, turning off lights when not needed (and before going home), adjusting computer monitors for sleep mode after 15 minutes of inactivity, and refraining from all plug-in loads in the office that are not absolutely necessary. A 2-3 percent overall energy reduction is obtainable through voluntary conservation, and with today's energy prices, converts to a possible savings of upwards of $350,000 per year.
Also, please visit the Environmental Resource Management booth at the upcoming Sharecase 2003 on March 26, 2003 to hear more about UCSD conservation programs.