Policy 525: Energy Conservation and Emissions Reduction Policy

Section: Operating Policies
Sub-Section: General
Policy Number: 525
Subject: Energy Conservation and Emissions Reduction Policy
Effective Date: July 1, 2012
Revision Date: July 1, 2011
Download the PDF File for Policy 525


In January 2007 President Albrecht signed the American College and University President’s Climate Commitment. As a result, a Sustainability Council and Climate Action Plan were put in place for the purpose of transitioning USU to carbon neutrality by 2050. At the center of this effort is the need to reduce energy use, especially that which originates from burning fossil fuels.

There is potential for considerable energy conservation measures from behavioral change by employees, students, and campus visitors in conjunction with installing energy efficient technologies. Energy costs are a major component of the University’s operating budget; thus, energy conservation and efficiency measures can become major components of fiscal responsibility.


2.1 Appliances

(1) Turn off copiers, printers and other office equipment at the end of the day. Enable power saving or sleep modes on equipment where available.

(2) Discontinue the use of personal refrigerators in offices. Employees should coordinate with departmental or unit managers for centralizing refrigerator availability in break rooms.

2.1.1 Computers

Turn off computer monitors and shut down hard drives at the end of the day. When leaving for more than two days, power down computers, screens, and accessories such as printers and scanners, and turn off power strips.

2.1.2 Heating

(1) Close blinds at the end of the day or during periods of direct sunlight in the summer. Keep windows closed when outside temperature is above 74°F or below 68°F.

(2) Discontinue the use of space heaters. Contact Facilities for HVAC adjustments and/or to assess and correct chronic problems. Wear appropriate clothing to ensure personal comfort.

(3) Room thermostats should be set to 78°F in the summer and 68°F in the winter. Employees are encouraged to wear appropriate clothing for the season to maintain comfort.

2.1.3 Laboratories

(1) Close fume hood sashes in laboratories to minimum levels when not working at the fume hood.

(2) All laboratory refrigeration equipment should be maintained in good condition with condensing coils and fans cleaned frequently. Equipment should be replaced with energy Star models when in poor condition and/or no longer running efficiently.

2.1.4 Lights

Turn off lights in offices, classrooms, laboratories, and conference rooms when not in use even if leaving the area for just a few moments. It is especially important to turn off the lights at the end of a class, and at the end of the day.


3.1 Appliances

Appliances will be replaced with Energy Star models at the end of the appliance life-cycle.

3.1.1 Computers

(1) Whenever practicable, servers should be located centrally in the USU/IT Data Center. Departments operating computer servers or other high heat load equipment should provide an independent cooling system to keep the rest of the building operating efficiently.

(2) All new computers and related equipment should be Energy Star rated when such models are available.

3.1.2 Heating & Cooling

(1) All heating and cooling equipment needing replacement must be replaced with Energy Star models.

(2) Programmable thermostats must be installed whenever practicable.

3.1.3 Lights

(1) All lights needing replacement must be replaced with either CFL or LED lights. Other technologies of equal or higher efficiencies may be substituted for CFL or LED as they become available.

(2) All fixtures needing replacement should be replaced with the most efficient fixtures available for the intended use.

(3) Motion or light sensors should be installed in high use areas whenever practicable.


In order to reduce USU’s emissions of CO, CO2, NOx, and other exhaust components and to improve air quality on campus and in the local community, USU adopts the following at the Logan, Tooele, Vernal, Roosevelt, Brigham City, Price, and Blanding campuses:

  • (1) Idling of gasoline and diesel powered vehicles shall be prohibited on campus, however,
  • (2) Nothing in this policy shall be implemented in a punitive manner, through the issuing of citations, tickets, or fines, rather,
  • (3) The idle-free initiative shall be implemented as an educational process.
  • (4) Police and emergency vehicles shall be exempt from this policy.
  • (5) Other vehicles that must use their engines to perform useful work while stationary (for example, concrete mixers that must keep their drums rotating to prevent concrete from solidifying and garbage trucks that must keep their engines running to compact trash) also are exempt from this policy while their engines are performing such tasks.


Exceptions to requirements of Policy 525 require the approval of the appropriate Dean or Vice President.