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ASU's Polytechnic campus kicks off conservation campaign

January 15, 2003

Arizona State University's Polytechnic campus is starting a conservation program to save precious campus resources, including utilities, time and people.

Facing budget cuts that will equal at least 10 percent, ASU's Polytechnic campus is looking for ways to cut operations funding that will not affect students or force layoffs.

And at the same time, the campus is looking to create a better work environment through more productive use of time and people.

The first resource to be targeted will be utilities, said Vice Provost for Administrative Services Terry Isaacson.

"Our water and electricity usage is high, and they are among the major campus expenditures that we can control through conservation," Isaacson said. "Also, with the water and power shortages that the state has faced, ASU's Polytechnic campus needs to do its part to be a good citizen in the state."

Water and electricity bills make up about 22 percent of ASU's Polytechnic campus's annual operations expenses, not including salaries. The campaign goal is to cut water and power usage by 20 percent.

As the campus continues to grow, the electrical bills in particular will continue to rise, according to Doug Sanford, director of facilities management. So the timing for reducing electrical usage and costs is critical, he said.

ASU's Polytechnic campus paid $523,089 last year in electric bills. The monthly bills were highest in the summer when air conditioning was heavily used. The campaign to target reduced energy consumption will focus on offices and academic buildings.

Called "It's a Bright Idea!" the campaign will call attention to ways to reduce electricity and how to report unnecessary electrical usage through a conservation hotline - 727-1956.

A campaign to conserve water will coincide with the energy campaign. ASU's Polytechnic campus will team with area cities in the statewide "Water. Use it Wisely!" campaign. That effort will provide easy-to-remember tips on saving water for campus housing residents, as well as employees.

Posters, flyers, magnets and brochures for both the water and electric campaign will be distributed on campus in the coming weeks. Additionally, a Web site for the overall resources campaign that will allow users to offer feedback on current initiatives and to suggest new ways to save will be operational in early November.

More details of the other resources conservation campaign will be rolled out in the coming months, including information on incentives and rewards to participate and save.