BC Does Its Part in MA's Energy Efficiency

It looks like Boston College’s win against the University of Southern California in football isn’t the East Coast’s only victory against the West Coast. A recent study in Forbes Magazine named Massachusetts “The Most Energy Efficient State in America,” surpassing California for the title. Pretty impressive, considering most Californians don’t even have to invest in central heating.

We should take pride that Massachusetts is steering the nation to be more environmentally friendly. According to Forbes, the leading reason for our number-one position is the “Green Communities Act." But what part does BC play in Massachusetts’ energy efficiency?

Photo Courtesy of Tumblr

Photo courtesy of Tumblr

Energy Usage

We’ve all seen the “Turn Off the Lights” stickers surrounding the light switches in our Residence Halls. If you wouldn’t normally think to turn off the lights when leaving a room, these little signs can serve as a helpful reminder --or a small guilt-trip-- to flip the switch. Either way, they work.

You may have been studying for midterms in a classroom in Stokes and had to get up and do some jumping jack-like dance moves to try and get the motion-detector lights to turn back on. Or, you’ve probably been studying anywhere else on campus and had a BC employee tell you to leave so they could shut down the building for the night. It would be nice to have every building open at all hours to our individual convenience, but the cost and energy saved by far is worth it.

Water Bottle Refill Stations

If you’re still buying plastic water bottles on campus, you’re doing it wrong. Go to the BC Bookstore and buy yourself a refillable water-bottle for $10. Every building, including the Plex, has filtered water refill stations. All dining halls, even the bathroom sinks and all of the water fountains, have them as well. It will end up being much cheaper for you, too.

Recycling

Photo Courtesy of Peter Kaminski / Flickr

Photo courtesy of Peter Kaminski / Flickr

A recycling bin accompanies almost all trash cans on campus. If they are empty, most containers
found at the BC Dining Halls can be recycled. Take the five seconds out of your day to separate the
lid from the cup of your coffee and recycle. Now if we could just get the compost bins back in the
dining halls…

Water-Saving Shower Heads

Yes, the trickle of water can be agonizing when you’re late for class and you still have conditioner in your hair. But according to conserveh2o.org, energy efficient shower-heads save 40% of water used in showers.

If you’re looking for ways to be even more efficient, try closing your windows and covering your floors with a carpet or rug as the temperature drops, so the heaters won’t overcompensate. You can also try seeing if your fridge and microwave have energy-saving switches. Make sure to be mindful of how many loads of laundry you’re doing, too. This is yet another thing that will help your pocket just as much as it will help the environment!

Although we may have been voted the number one energy efficient state in the country, there is always room for improvement. Eagles, make sure you keep actively trying to save energy because each of us can make a difference. It's safe to say that we do not want to be second to California in the rankings of energy efficiency next year.

For more tips on how to go green, click here. If you are interesting in becoming a bigger representative of BC’s part in energy efficiency, contact BC’s EcoPledge.

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