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Energy saving measures pay off; some offices to close over break

The Office of the Provost has reported significant energy savings due to recent conservation measures, and steps will be taken over the winter break to continue to reduce energy consumption.

Temperatures in academic spaces such as classrooms, labs, auditoria and lecture rooms will be reduced to 55 degrees from Dec. 15 to Jan. 16 when possible. Anyone who would like to reserve one of the spaces affected by the planned temperature reductions should notify Facilities Operations so the temperature can be increased when a room will be occupied. Libraries and research spaces will not be affected by the policy.

During winter recess, Dec. 22-Jan. 1, some offices will be closed. Offices that remain open will have temperatures set at 65 degrees from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and at 55 degrees after 5 p.m. on workdays and during weekends. The policy does not apply to libraries and research spaces.

KU contracts with Chevron Energy Solutions to reduce energy consumption. Don Steeples, vice provost for scholarly support, recently reported that energy saving measures taken in fiscal year 2006 saved KU more than $500,000. During that time, electricity consumption was reduced by 13,292,950 kilowatt hours. Natural gas consumption was reduced by 608,310 therms. Steeples said the efforts reduced the university’s carbon emissions by 15,000 tons and saved enough electricity to power more than 490 homes for a year.

Office Closings

The provost’s office recommends employees check with their supervisors to see whether their offices will be closed during the winter recess.

University support staff and unclassified employees of offices that will be closed over break are expected to take vacation leave during the days the office is closed. They may also use compensatory time already accrued and/or the discretionary day during the winter recess period.

Those who wish to work during the break even though their offices are closed should contact Human Resources/Equal Opportunity to arrange an alternative work assignment. Administrative leave will not be given to those whose offices are closed during the break.

Individuals planning to visit an office during the break should call ahead to be sure it is open.

To learn more about how to conserve energy at KU, visit www.sustainability.ku.edu/ energy.shtml.

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