Bailey Hall Wins Lights Out! Competition

LAWRENCE — Twelve hard-fought weeks have finally yielded a winner in the Lights Out! energy conservation competition at the University of Kansas. The faculty and staff in Bailey Hall nudged past Green and Summerfield Halls in the closing weeks.

The final standings for the competition:

Bailey Hall, College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, 17.2 percent savings.

Green Hall, School of Law, 15.6 percent savings.

Summerfield Hall, School of Business, 11.1 percent savings.

The friendly competition among the three buildings began the first week of February and challenged occupants to engage in energy-conservation behaviors. The faculty and staff turned off unnecessary lighting, made sure computers were in sleep mode or turned off, shut down office equipment in the evenings, kept doors and windows closed, allowed temperature set points to be adjusted, replaced incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescents, and helped identify hours when heating and cooling could be turned off.

In total, 228 individuals made a pledge to do their part to save energy, committing to adopt specific conservation behaviors during the competition. The result was a combined savings of 14.3 percent compared to the 2011 baseline energy consumption.

Bailey Hall had the largest weekly savings total in eight of the 12 weeks, including a Week 7 savings amount of 35.5 percent, the highest of any building during the competition. For their victory, faculty and staff in Bailey Hall will be treated to a barbeque lunch.

“While the savings certainly blew away our expectations, the real benefit was just how committed and competitive the participants were throughout the competition," said Tim O’Kane, director of marketing for Energy Solutions Professionals. “I think we’re going to see a lasting impact from this effort. By the end, the conversations were as much about making changes because it was the right thing to do, regardless of whether it meant they would win the competition.”

KU Center for Sustainability Director Jeff Severin was also impressed by the success of the pilot project and hopes to see similar results as Energy Solutions Professionals and the Center continue to work with additional buildings on campus.

 “Bailey Hall won the competition, but Green Hall and Summerfield Hall both put up a good fight.” he said. “The Green Teams in both buildings worked together to identify opportunities for savings throughout their buildings and encouraged their fellow students, faculty, and staff to do their part.  They helped create a great model we can use moving forward with energy conservation at KU.”

More information about the competition, the energy pledge, and the results can be found at online