College of Science Energy Challenge 2009

Author: Marissa Gebhard

The Dean of the College of Science, Gregory Crawford, and his College of Science Committee on Sustainability (COSCOS) recently surveyed our buildings and associated infrastructure with an eye towards reducing energy consumption and promoting sustainability.

To complement ongoing investments in energy-conserving technologies on campus, the College of Science believes it can reduce its energy footprint substantially and experience a substantial savings annually. This can be accomplished by promoting cultural change in its students and faculty and by managing energy use more closely in its lecture halls and laboratories.

In the first phase of this plan, college staff, administrators and professors will work with students to reduce electrical use while COSCOS members will work with facility managers in Galvin, Stepan, Nieuwland and Jordan halls on a similar objective.

The Dome will support college efforts by converting the annual savings into funding for undergraduate and graduate students working in a sustainability related area. The program will start in February 2009, and the annual savings will be calculated by comparing the energy budgets for 2009 and subsequent years to the baseline 2008 budget. At the same time, Dean Crawford has challenged Provost Burish to a friendly energy competition between the college and the Dome, to which Provost Burish responded, “This is a wonderful idea in which everyone will win – Let the competition begin!”.

According to Dean Crawford, “The college hopes to assume a prominent role at Notre Dame on energy conservation and sustainability matters, and will continue to collaborate with the newly-formed Office of Sustainability, other colleges and efforts on campus, and other groups both on and off campus to fulfill its mission.”