Published: Oct. 18, 2023 By

Light bulbEnergy conservation is a valuable practice that advances CU Boulder’s sustainability goals for students, faculty and staff. When we all do our part to use less energy and invest in energy-saving habits, we benefit ourselves, our community and our world. Plus, small actions can lead to significant financial savings over time. 

Here are five ways to incorporate energy conservation into your daily activities. 

Join the AWorld app Energy Challenge 

Last spring, CU Boulder partnered with the AWorld app from ActNow to promote sustainability for our campus community. The app can help you implement and track sustainable habits by providing personalized carbon footprint analyses, educational journeys with habit suggestions and demonstrating the impact of your changes. 

  • Participate in the CU team energy challenge on the AWorld app from Oct. 1 to Dec. 1. 
  • Track carbon-reducing energy actions, like taking the stairs, washing laundry with cold water or unplugging electronics. 
  • Top participants will earn individual prizes. If users work together to reach the community goal of 2,000 energy actions, the Environmental Center will donate up to $10,000 toward community sustainability projects. 
  • Download the app and participate in the challenge. 

  Schedule an EcoVisit 

The Environmental Center offers EcoVisits for students, faculty, staff and city of Boulder residents. You can schedule an EcoVisit for an off-campus residence, residence hall room or on-campus apartment. The EcoVisit includes a visit from a student member of the EcoVisit team where they will share ways to reduce your energy usage, like these: 

  • Optimize lighting by switching to energy-efficient LED light bulbs. Remember to turn off lights and use natural light whenever possible. 
  • Minimize vampire or phantom loads by unplugging electronics when not in use or using power strips with switches to cut off power to multiple devices. Many electronics and appliances will continue to use power when plugged in and not in use.  
  • Conserve hot water by taking shorter showers. Wash your laundry in cold water and wait until you have a full load before running the washing machine. 

 Plan for cooler temperatures 

As the weather cools, the cost of heating your space can increase. You can take steps to reduce energy use during the winter months.  

  • You can weatherize your living space to prevent heat transfer through windows and doors, which can help lower your energy consumption. For renters, you can add thick curtains or use temporary weather insulator kits. If you own your property, you can make more permanent changes, like using caulk to seal cracks or investing in energy-efficient windows and doors.  
  • Adjust your thermostat by setting it to 68°F in the winter. Installing a smart thermostat allows you to program automatic temperature settings to schedule lower temperatures when you are away from home to conserve even more energy. For renters, check with the property owner before you make changes. 

 Use sustainable transportation 

Boulder is the perfect place to use sustainable transportation. With miles of walkways and bike paths, convenient public transporation and electric charging stations, you can easily choose a sustainable way to get around campus and the city. 

 Learn more about energy conservation 

Take the time to learn more about how you can practice sustainability through energy conservation. There are many ways to incorporate energy-saving strategies and other sustainable actions into your daily routine. From small acts, like walking to nearby destinations instead of driving, to larger investments, like purchasing an electric vehicle or installing solar panels, you can make a difference in climate justice. 

 Find support 

The Environmental Center offers many resources and programs to support sustainability at CU Boulder and beyond. You can get involved through volunteering, an on-campus job, downloading the AWorld App and much more.