It’s that time of year again, the fun and freedom of Summer has departed, the days are getting darker, the rain has….well…continued, murmurings of that dreaded word, Christmas, have begun, and we’re returning to our college and uni campuses, or back to work after a summer break.
But for all the downers this season brings us, it’s a great chance to interrupt the rhythms of our lives and start something new. There are fresh opportunities, new people to meet and more ways to make our impact on this world.
Through the wonders of stalking old friends through Facebook, I came across Southampton University’s ‘Blackout’. Blackout saw 200 students racing across campus turning off all unessential electrical equipment one Friday evening in April. The results were amazing, energy usage after the blackout weekend was down 6%. That seemingly small reduction saved 7 tonnes of carbon and 16,000 kWh of energy, that’s enough to power 5 family homes for a year! It also saved more than £1,600, which equates to £84,000 over the course of a year. That blows me away. Blackout 2013 is already being planned by staff and students, and will show how far they’ve come in the last year in terms of saving energy, and how much more can be achieved.
What’s more, Southampton’s Student Union’s Ethical and Environmental department have been getting students to make a pledge for the upcoming year as they return to uni. Check out the pledges that have been made so far.
Why not follow in Southampton’s footsteps and get your campus or workplace involved in reducing their environmental footprint? Or perhaps you have more encouraging stories to tell? We’d love to hear them!
And Southampton – keep up the great work, and this is coming from a Portsmouth student!