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UW Committee Offers Tips to Reduce Environmental Impacts

October 20, 2014
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The University of Wyoming Campus Sustainability Committee has launched Eco-Pokes, an initiative to provide easy tips for how students, staff and faculty can reduce their impact on the environment -- and wallets.

“We’ll also provide updates about opportunities to get involved on campus and in the community,” says committee co-chair Nicole Korfanta, UW Haub School of Environment and Natural Resources associate director.

Eco-Pokes Tip #1: Winter is just around the corner in Wyoming. Take some easy and more extensive steps to reduce your winter heating needs to save energy and money.

-- Open shades on south-facing windows during the day to allow for natural heating. Close them at night to reduce the chill. Use insulated shades and curtains or heavy-duty plastic to maximize weatherization.

-- Lower your thermostat setting at night and before leaving the house to reduce your energy bills without affecting comfort. Better yet, digital thermostats can be programmed to do this automatically for added convenience.

-- Properly maintain your heating and cooling system for the most efficient use possible.

-- Seal holes and cracks around your walls, ceilings, windows, doors, light and plumbing fixtures, switches, and electrical outlets with caulking and weather stripping to reduce heat loss.

-- Check insulation levels, especially in your attic. An attic insulation value of at least R-49 (at least 14 inches of common blown-in cellulose insulation) is recommended in Laramie.

Find additional tips and learn more about winter energy savings at

On and Around Campus:

Campus Sustainability Day is Wednesday, Oct. 22. Like the committee on Facebook, and let the group know how you plan to celebrate sustainability this week and throughout the semester.

After a successful launch in spring 2014, the first UW Conservation and Efficiency Revolving (CERF) project is now underway. The project supported air filter upgrades to more efficient bag filters and frames in HVAC systems in 11 buildings across campus. The upgrades are projected to result in up to a 54 percent reduction in energy costs, a 63 percent reduction in labor costs, and an 80 percent reduction in waste costs over 5 years. Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions associated with the filters are expected to decrease by 58 percent.

“As these savings begin to replenish the fund, a CSC subcommittee will request proposals for projects from the greater campus community,” says committee co-chair Jim Scott, UW Physical Plant director. “Stay connected with the CSC to learn more about how to propose a CERF project that reduces resource use on the UW campus.”

The Campus Sustainability Committee serves in an advisory capacity to all campus departments, colleges and other entities in an effort to advance cost effective environmental sustainability at the university. Contact the committee at

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