Sustainability at Boston University and Student Government officials held a pizza party for students living in Danielsen Hall on Tuesday as the prize for winning an energy-saving competition.
The competition, which was held throughout September and October of the Fall 2013 semester, challenged all major residence halls to reduce their energy consumption. Performance was judged based which hall could use the least amount of electricity during these months compared to those in the previous year.
“It was a comparison in the electricity used in the previous year with the current year over September and October,” said Director of Sustainability Dennis Carlberg. “So it’s the same period for the same building and the goal was to reduce your energy consumption in comparison to the previous year.”
Because the competition was successful in inspiring students to change their energy consumption habits, similar contests will likely be held in the future, Carlberg said.
“Every time you see a competition like this you see intense participation, and then people tend to get closer to their old habits, but they never return to their old habits,” he said. “It always makes a difference. We are talking about making this again next year and we do, the level [of energy used by students] will decrease even more. We also have a new audience, new freshmen, new people on campus so the more you do this, the more it becomes the norm. And we want it to become the norm.”
President of the Danielson Hall Residence Association Dheandra Jack said residents of Danielsen Hall were encouraged to save energy through posters and sustainability discussions at meetings.
“There was a sign up in the hallway and we talked to residents at our open meetings,” Jack, a College of Arts and Sciences sophomore, said. “Whenever we saw them in hallways, encouraging them to remember to turn of their lights, shut off the water when they are not using it–just to be sure they were mindful of how they are using the energy and not to overuse.”
Liza Stone, a CAS junior, said controlling energy usage in the bathrooms by shutting off the lights or turning off dripping faucets was a significant method of saving energy.
“I always turn off the light in the bathroom, even if I am walking by the bathroom and the lights are on, I’ll turn it off,” Stone said. “There is one sink on the eighth floor that is always dripping because to turn it all the way off you have to really push it and I always push it the rest of the way whenever I pass by it.”
Alyssa Laiacona, a College of Communication sophomore, said she and her roommate cut down on their energy usage by remembering to turn their room’s lights off during daylight hours, and when they were not in the room.
“My roommate and I always turn off the lights before we leave,” Laiacona said. “We don’t keep the lights on long. If we are both in the room, we will only use one light. We use the daylight during the day, obviously, we don’t have the lights on at six in the morning, we just let the sun come up.”
Jacquelyn Cleary, a CAS sophomore and resident of Danielsen Hall, said she will continue her energy-saving habits in order to protect the environment.
“I’ll continue to do everything I can to save energy,” Cleary said. “It is our world and we need to make it better and keep it going.”