Oct. 22, 2009

Revise your building plan

by Merry Rankin, director of sustainability

Did you know that each building on campus has its own unique energy usage plan -- a plan that takes into account the idiosyncrasies of the building and its occupants?

View your building energy plan on the FP&M web site.

Unfortunately, once a plan is put into place, it's often easily forgotten. Occupants should regularly review building plans to see if any adjustments should be made. Such adjustments can be significant when creating an energy usage plan that maximizes energy savings. For example, lowering the winter temperature setting just one degree can save up to 10 percent in heating costs.

Check out your plan

Ensuring your building's energy plan is current and efficient is easy. Here are some useful tips:

  • Find your current energy plan at www.fpm.iastate.edu/utilities/bldg_energy_plans/default.asp.
  • University standard settings for weekdays (7 a.m.-6p.m.) are 68 degrees during winter months and 74 degrees during summer. If your building has information that varies from these standard settings, it was implemented through building occupant request.
  • Within your building's plan, click on the various system names to learn more about how those systems operate.
  • For additional questions about your building's plan or to review plan adjustment options (which can be even more energy-efficient than the standard settings), contact Clark Thompson, (cthompso@iastate.edu, 4-9812). FP&M staff can help you set up trial periods to test more efficient settings.

And don't stop at your campus building. Review your home energy plan and see what efficiency opportunities you have there. Some great tools to get you started are available on the City of Ames web site.

Over the next few weeks, take a minute to review your building plans (and make sure to put a note on your calendar for another review next semester). A little revision can make a significant impact.