The energy efficiency projects undertaken by Facilities Management and Planning most often take place behind the scenes. These upgrades move DU toward goals of reducing its carbon footprint, energy use intensity and overall energy consumption, but we cannot truly succeed without the help of every person on campus doing their part to reduce their personal energy use. The Energy Team at the Center for Sustainability runs several programs aimed at giving students, faculty and staff the tools to reduce energy use on- and off-campus, seeking engaging and creative ways to educate the community on best practices.
DU It in the Dark
DU It in the Dark is the Center for Sustainability’s annual energy challenge. Hosted during the month of February every year, DU It in the Dark asks students to commit to small, personal behavior changes that will help them save energy in their daily lives. Supplemented by weekly education and engagement events, students learn about their personal carbon footprints and how their everyday actions have a broader impact. Students who participate in events during the month are eligible to win awesome sustainability prizes. Check this site in January to see the current year’s schedule of events.
Students, organizations and departments across campus frequently utilize travel to maximize their experience at DU. Whether it is traveling for study abroad, research, sports teams, conferences or even personal travel back home or for trips to the mountains, DU students are frequently going by car, bus or plane to get to various destinations. 79% of DU’s carbon footprint is created offsite, with study abroad alone accounting for nearly 10% of DU’s total footprint.
Anyone in the DU community can opt-in to the carbon offsets fund, which partners with various carbon offset programs. Currently, donations to the fund contribute to a methane recapture program located on the Southern Ute Indian Tribal Lands in the San Juan Basin in Southern Colorado. Those who donate to this fund can feel good about their travel knowing that their money is helping to restore balance in our atmosphere by allowing the carbon their travel emitted to be offset locally and equitably.
Learn more about carbon offsets and the Southern Ute Indian Tribal Lands project here.
Give to the carbon offset fund here or by texting CARBON to 41444.
Click here to determine how much it will cost to offset your travel.
Renter Efficiency Program for Students (REPS)
Students living in off-campus housing have the opportunity to have highly-trained student interns perform an energy audit on their home, learn tips and tricks for reducing energy consumption through behavioral changes and receive free energy efficiency upgrades in their home through this free program. And, you’ll get a burrito just for participating.
Learn more about the REPS program and how to sign up here.
Our Green Greeks team works with social organizations to perform energy and waste audits for their houses, and run fun and educational events with and among the social fraternities and sororities.
Are you in one of these organizations and interested in getting involved? The program is always growing, and we are looking for other student leaders to partner with!
Open Mic Night
We believe a strong sense of community is one of the most important aspects of creating a more just and sustainable campus. Throughout the school year, our student leaders host a number of Open Mic Nights, which opens the floors to other student musicians, poets, bands and comedians to share their talent with their peers. The program is mixed with fun facts and trivia questions about the Center for Sustainability and sustainable living, so students get to learn in a fun and community-oriented environment that makes the point that we can have a great time while creating the best version of our campus, socially and environmentally.