Several suggestions to Miami University's Web site: www.muohio.edu/ThisMakesCents target reducing costs by turning off lights. The recreational sports center implemented a "lights off when not in use" and other policies with small changes that add up to big savings.
"We are in the process of retro fitting and re-lamping our light fixtures to take advantage of more efficient fluorescent lights or 'pulse start' metal halide lamps," says Tom Fister, director of recreational physical facilities. The conversion will save an estimated $20,000 annually on the center's electric usage bill.
The "lights off" policy, as well as daytime light level reduction, will also reduce energy consumption and the center's overall carbon footprint. Fister estimates these savings at $7,900 annually.
Other action initiated by rec sports includes:
* reducing the pool temperatures by one degree where possible. "We have an 880,000 gallon 50-meter pool, a 680,000 gallon dive pool and a 68,000 gallon leisure pool," says Fister, so savings could be significant;
* closing Withrow Court on Fridays when demand is minimal, saving an estimated $1,787 annually; and
* reducing the herd count at the Miami equestrian center by 10 horses, resulting in a $27,000 savings.
Suggestions to Miami's marketing communications office include eliminating the printed Miami directory. The office has reduced printed pieces significantly over several years. For example, the residence hall directory was eliminated and the student handbook made available online rather than in print.
In 2004-05, the Miami directory was 260 pages. Costs to produce 6,000 copies was $10,093. The next year, when the online directory was implemented, those listings were dropped from the print version. The cost for 6,000 copies went down to $4,921. The price has continued to drop slightly each year since; this year's cost $3,675.
"IT services and university communications teamed up this year to add features to the online directory, " says Arlene Werts, director of marketing communications and associate director of university communications. "Now you can search by office, keyword, or individual name. Instructions will soon be in place for units to manage their entries. Once that step is complete, we will evaluate the need to continue publishing a directory."