Call to Conserve Energy During New Peak Times

 

Chancellor Jimmy G. CheekTo: UT Knoxville Students, Faculty and Staff

From: Chancellor Jimmy G. Cheek

Subject: Call to Conserve Energy During New Peak Times

Today marks the beginning of Earth Month on our campus. It also marks a change in the way we purchase electricity.

UT Knoxville is one of the largest electrical customers in the Tennessee Valley Authority’s service area. TVA is changing the rate structure for its largest customers in an effort to reduce overall consumption during high energy use times. Going forward, our energy costs will vary based on times that TVA has identified as peak power use times.

This change provides our campus community with a special opportunity to save money by adjusting our study, work, and play habits around those peak times.

Here is how you can help:

Switch Your Thinking• Cut back on energy usage in the afternoon to early evening hours of 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. weekdays in the spring and summer months.

• Students in residence halls should avoid doing laundry during the peak time period if possible. Students also should be conscientious of energy consumption when using computers, televisions and game systems during the peak time hours.

• Faculty and staff should take advantage of natural light in their offices and take lighting into consideration when arranging for conference and workroom space. They should also avoid printing or copying large documents and using other electronic machinery during peak times.

• Whenever possible, higher electric use activities should be scheduled for periods outside of the peak time window.

While the most critical months are June, July, August, and September, we must start preparing ourselves for those high usage months when our costs will be almost 50 percent higher than other months.

Campus-wide, several changes have been made with more to come. We’ve adjusted the electric water heaters in our academic and administrative facilities for peak time compliance. We’re also working to adjust room and class schedules to reduce our need to cool our large classrooms during peak times.

In 2008, we launched a goal of cutting our energy consumption by 10 percent. Earlier this year, we asked you to help us cut 10 percent over last year. I know that this opportunity combined with your ongoing efforts will allow us to save even more energy this calendar year.

Because our students, faculty, and staff have already proven their ability to impact our costs, I am confident that we can make a difference. Thank you for your help with this important effort and for all that you do to enhance our campus sustainability.

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