As utility costs continue to increase, the City must look for new ways to conserve resources and energy. In our efforts to save money, reduce energy use and conserve our resources, the City of Tempe is implementing an energy conservation plan that includes changes and improvements to buildings, procedures and employee contributions. The plan, rolled out on Jan. 3, 2011, includes the following changes:
- Heating - Set points will be adjusted within a comfort zone of 65-71 degrees.
- Air Conditioning - Set points will be adjusted within a comfort zone of 72-78 degrees.
- Ventilation - Air circulation and quality will be improved in many locations due to new energy-efficient equipment.
- Custodial Hours of Operation - Custodial work hours will change from nighttime shifts to daytime to reduce utility costs. Additional benefits include better employee interaction. This change is expected to result in energy savings of at least $60,000 annually in lighting alone.
- Custodial Duties - Because custodial work load has increased while staffing levels have decreased, custodians will vacuum common areas daily and other areas as needed. Custodians will empty common-area trash and recycling on a daily basis, with minor assistance from employees in emptying their individual containers as needed. As a result, custodians will be able to clean restrooms and other high-use and/or public areas more frequently.
- Personal appliances - Employees will be asked to eliminate individual/personal appliances including: space heaters, refrigerators, hot plates, microwave ovens and coffee makers that consume considerable amounts of energy.
- Recycling & trash - Employees will be responsible for taking their own recycling and trash to nearby common-area containers.
- Vacuuming - Employees will be responsible for vacuuming their own work spaces using vacuum cleaners that will be available in convenient centralized locations. Employees who are unable to vacuum for any reason can submit a Public Works service request online.
- Turn it off - Employees will be responsible for turning off computers, printers and other equipment at the end of each day and before weekends/holidays.
By improving city buildings and making them more energy efficient, implementing thermostat set points and changing custodial hours of operation and procedures, the City of Tempe can realize the following savings:
- Annual Utility Cost Savings - $550,000 from installation of energy efficient equipment
- Environmental Benefit - 9,360,896 lbs. CO2 emissions eliminated (equivalent to removing nearly 804 cars from the road)
- Additional Savings - 15% or more
By creating a culture of environmental stewardship, the city can realize significant additional energy and cost savings. Changing our routines and actions is one of the easiest ways to reduce average utility costs, and can result in savings of 15 percent or more.