How much do you think Mason spends on energy each year? If you guessed about $10 million, you are correct! Mason spends $7.8 million and $1.8 million annually on electricity and natural gas, respectively. So the more energy we save, the more money we can have to invest in other university services and benefits.
According to George Mason University’s 2016 greenhouse gas emissions inventory, our buildings produce nearly 50% of our total greenhouse gas emissions. Mason worked has with Siemens Building Technologies to complete two Energy Savings Performance Contracts to upgrade its buildings to be more energy and water efficient. Highlights of this project include upgrading our heating and air conditioning equipment, replacing existing lighting with more energy efficient lighting and occupancy sensors, installing low-flow water fixtures, and improving our building automation system to match weather and occupancy schedules. Each year, Mason saves close to $2 million from these efforts.
You can also take steps to conserve energy, on and off campus! These include:
- Setting your thermostat settings to 70°F in the winter and 78°F in the summer time. Heating and cooling needs are a building’s largest energy use. Dress appropriately to stay comfortable and ease thermostat use
- If you think the temperature is out of range, please contact Customer Service at 703-993-2525
- Shortening your shower time to reduce the amount of energy necessary to heat up water – or better yet, take a cold shower!
- Washing a full laundry load in cold water
- Purchasing LED light bulbs for task lighting, as LEDs are longer-lasting and use less energy than traditional incandescent and CFL lightbulbs
- Turning off lights when exiting a room
- Switching off all electronics and electrical appliances, as opposed to using standby power
If you want to help Mason reduce it’s energy consumption, you can join our Green Office Program, certifying your office as a sustainable space, or our Green Resident Certification, greening your residence hall.