Energy Conservation

I.  Policy

The purpose of this policy is to guide the operations of the university in order to achieve the highest standards in energy usage with consideration of the impact on environmental quality and economic performance. To accomplish this goal, the university shall establish procedures to consider energy use in the design and operation of university facilities in the most economical and environmentally friendly manner possible, educate the university community on the use of energy and consider energy use in purchasing decisions and transportation. The benefits gained include, but are not limited to, protection of ecosystems, improvement of air and water quality, reduction of waste, and conservation of resources.

 

II. Methods to Achieve Energy Conservation

A. Building Temperature

The University is committed to efficient management in the use of energy for heating and cooling systems while providing a quality indoor environment that enables the University community to achieve its mission.

The following indoor temperature ranges for occupied spaces shall be maintained on campus:

 Season Temperature Range
Air conditioning  74 – 76 degrees
Heating  68 – 72 degrees

These ranges fall within ASHRAE standard 55-2004 “Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy.”

Certain specialized areas – laboratories, library collections, the Data Center, galleries, gymnasiums and event areas for example – may have deviations from these guidelines but will be expected to be maintained within recognized efficient ranges for their type of use. Individuals or departments seeking ongoing deviations in building temperature must seek prior approval from the provost or the vice president of administration.

Appropriate nighttime, weekend and holiday setbacks will be implemented outside of established hours of operation.

B. Hours of Operation

The standard operating hours for the university are 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Friday.  Classrooms operating hours are 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday, with additional Saturday hours on the Stafford campus; weekend operating hours are on request on the Fredericksburg campus.  Laboratory and associated office operating hours will be established on a one on one basis, with the intent of maximizing energy savings without disrupting research.

Operating hours within certain facilities may vary, and reasonable requests for temporary deviations will be accommodated.  Individuals or departments seeking significant ongoing deviations in operating hours must seek prior approval from the provost or the vice president of administration.

 

C. Policy Implementation

Occupied spaces in new or significantly renovated facilities are expected to be designed to operate and perform within these ranges.

Some building HVAC – heating, ventilation and air conditioning — systems may not be capable to achieve the intended temperature and humidity ranges for all of the occupied spaces that they serve.  In such cases, UMW will use whatever methods available to try to reduce energy usage while still maintaining space temperatures.

D. Construction

The University facilities shall, to the extent possible, be designed, constructed, renovated, operated and maintained in accordance with the latest energy/water efficiency standards and in a manner consistent with the US Green Building Council’s LEED™ Building Rating Systems. Specifically the university shall:

1. Comply with Executive Order 48 (2007) “Energy Efficiency in State Government”

2. Make decisions concerning investments for renovations or new construction of all facilities at the

University based on total cost of ownership or life cycle cost analysis.

3. Identify and strive to implement those strategies identified as being available and least costly.

4. Evaluate and compare alternative energy sources for short and long-term costs while considering future

projections for availability and price escalation of all energy sources.

5. Explore teaching and research opportunities to assist in evaluating energy and water usage and

recommending potential conservation measures.

 

E. Energy Efficiency and Conservation

 

1. Identify, evaluate and implement, when practical, cost effective strategies to reduce energy/water demand.

2. Develop and implement strategies to encourage full participation of building occupants in energy/water

efficiency and conservation programs. Include strategies such as information dissemination and incentive

programs.

3. Develop and promote energy/water efficiency and conservation strategies whenever possible and practical.

 

F. Energy Management

The University has implemented a building energy management system.  The Facilities Services Control and Energy department constantly monitors energy consumption for most campus buildings, including fume hood usage, in real-time and making adjustments as necessary to conserve energy while ensuring occupant comfort.  This includes but is not limited to, ice storage production and usage, demand shedding, and peak shaving.

G. Individual Energy Conservation

Students are encouraged to:

  1. Follow IT’s energy saving guidelines for computers: configure monitors to turn off after 20 minutes of inactivity, hard drive to turn off after 30 minutes of inactivity, and desktop computer or laptop to go into a standby or sleep mode after 90 minutes of inactivity.  (In the event the computer does not have a standby or sleep mode, simply turn off the monitor when it is not in use).
  2. Avoid the use of screensavers because they continue to use the monitor at full power and do not conserve energy.
  3. Turn off the lights when leaving residences/classrooms.
  4. Avoid halogen floor lamps.
  5. Keep the door to residences closed.
  6. Buy energy-efficient electronics with the Energy Star label, such as computers, printers, and refrigerators.  For more information, go to http://www.energystar.gov
  7. Avoid the use of space heaters or opening windows while heat is on.
  8. Report over-cooling, over-heating, unnecessary lighting, or other energy waste, contact Facilities Services via the work request system, accessed through UMW Eagle Net.

Faculty and Staff are encouraged to:

  1. Turn off lights in conference rooms, offices and classrooms when those spaces are not in use.
  2. Avoid halogen floor lamps.
  3. Purchase energy-efficient office equipment, including computers, fax machines, and copies.  Look for the “Energy Star” label, which identifies equipment that meets government energy efficiency standards.  Please note that there is a misconception that computers and monitors purchased with the Energy Star logo are already energy efficient.  In reality, they have built-in energy conservation features, but your computer cannot take full advantage of these built-in energy saving mechanisms until the power management features are enabled and configured.
  4. Keep windows and exterior doors closed.
  5. Turn off all departmental office equipment at the end of the day, such as copiers and printers.
  6. Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
  7. Use a winter setting of 70 degrees when heating is required and a summer setting of 76 degrees when cooling is required. Modification of dress, within University policy, to promote individual comfort is encouraged.
  8. Report over-cooling, over-heating, unnecessary lighting or other energy waste. Contact Facilities Services via the Work Management System, accessed through UMW Eagle Net. Avoid the use of space heaters or opening windows while heat or air conditioning is in operation.
  9. Follow IT’s energy saving guidelines for computers: configure monitors to turn off after 20 minutes of inactivity, hard drive to turn off after 30 minutes of inactivity, and desktop computer or laptop to go into a standby or sleep mode after 90 minutes of inactivity.  (In the event the computer does not have a standby or sleep mode, simply turn off the monitor when it is not in use).
  10. Shut down the monitor and printer or place them in a standby mode when away from the office for more than a few hours.
  11. Avoid the use of screensavers because they continue to use the monitor at full power and do not conserve energy.
  12. Properly perform orderly shutdown of computers, monitors, and printers when leaving the office for the day.
  13. Turn on printers, speakers, and other accessories only when needed.