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Record-breaking heat hits Nashville; do your part to conserve energy now

Posted in NEWS on Friday, June 29th, 2012

[Originally by myVU]

With the National Weather Service issuing a special weather warning that a dangerous and possibly historic heat wave will continue at least through the Fourth of July holiday, everyone at Vanderbilt is encouraged to take steps to protect themselves against the heat and to reduce energy consumption on campus and at the medical center.

To stay safe in hot weather:

  • Avoid long-term exposure to the heat by remaining indoors during the hottest part of the day.
  • If you do have to be outside, slow down, drink plenty of non-alcoholic fluids and wear lightweight, loose-fitting clothes.

Vanderbilt is one of the largest energy consumers in Middle Tennessee, and while conserving energy should be practiced all year, it’s particularly important during high- heat conditions such as we will experience in the coming days. (Nashville’s all-time high temperature record of 107 is in jeopardy this afternoon.)

Slight modifications to energy use can have a large impact when aggregated across the entire university. Here are some things you can do to help reduce energy consumption in your area:

  • Moderate thermostat settings to 76-78 degrees. Remember to adjust thermostats in classrooms unoccupied during the summer. Adjust thermostats more radically when you leave for the day or weekend. Dress for the hot weather so you can remain comfortable in more moderate temperatures.
  • Close window shades or blinds during the hottest part of the day to keep heat out and cool air in.
  • Turn off lights in your workspace when you leave, even if only for a short period of time. Turning off your lights will save energy if you are gone for more than 30 seconds.
  • Turn off lights to common areas such as kitchens, bathrooms, break rooms, classrooms and conference rooms when you leave and especially before leaving for the day. Many of these spaces sit empty the majority of the day.
  • Turn off office equipment. If allowed in your area, computers, printers, copiers and scanners can be turned off when you leave for the day (or at the end of your work shift if they will not be used again for several hours). Otherwise, activate sleep modes and energy-saving settings. Instructions for modifying power settings can be found on the SustainVU Energy Saving Tips page.
  • In laboratory spaces, close fume hood sashes when not in use. A single fume hood running 24 hours can use the same amount of energy as a single-family home in a year.
  • If your office or area seems unusually cold or hot, or if you have trouble regulating the temperature, please call VU Plant Operations at 343-9675 or VUMC Plant Services at 322-2041 to let them know.

VU Plant OperationsVUMC Plant Services and the Sustainability and Environmental Management Office ask for your help and cooperation with these conservation efforts.

For additional ways to conserve energy, visit Vanderbilt’s ThinkOne energy conservation website.

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