Friday 3 July 2015
The students of QMUL’s Dawson Hall at the Charterhouse Square campus have pulled off the impressive feat of achieving a 10 per cent reduction in energy usage compared to the last academic year, the sixth greatest in a competition between 139 separate halls of residence across the EU.
The dramatic saving was achieved as part of the National Union of Student’s (NUS) Student Switch Off campaign in which QMUL takes part each year. This year, QMUL was selected by the NUS and EU as the only London university, and one of only seven UK universities, to be part of an EU-wide league table of 15 participating institutions. This included universities from Cyprus, Lithuania and Greece.
Student Switch Off encourages students to save energy by undertaking simple actions like switching off chargers and lights, wearing extra layers during winter, and putting lids on pots. Students are incentivised to take part by the numerous competitions which reward their ‘green’ behaviour, such as the weekly photo competitions on the Student Switch Off Facebook page. They can win prizes including vouchers for Genesis cinema, and pots of Ben & Jerry’s Fairtrade ice cream. At the end of the year, the hall that saves the most energy wins a party, which for Dawson Hall meant a barbecue and ice cream party in the sunshine earlier this month to celebrate their success.
Overall, the Student Switch Off campaign achieved a five per cent reduction in total energy consumption across QMUL halls of residence compared to last academic year. These fantastic results are testament both to the enthusiasm shown by the 1,843 students who took part in the campaign through the year, as well as the dedication of the staff from Residential Support, the QMUL Sustainability team and the NUS, who run the project collaboratively.