Tri-Co Energy Competition Update

Editor’s note: This article was initially published in The Daily Gazette, Swarthmore’s online, daily newspaper founded in Fall 1996. As of Fall 2018, the DG has merged with The Phoenix. See the about page to read more about the DG.

In March, the Daily Gazette reported on Earthlust’s “Tri-Co Energy Competition.” The competition, which measured energy consumption in dorms and of the campus in general ended with a win for Willets. Since then, however, more information has been obtained.

According to Earthlust’s Nick Buttino ’09 Swarthmore did defeat Bryn Mawr in the competition, but Haverford conferred with Earthlust about the end results. Despite beating Bryn Mawr, Earthlust has not received a response from Bryn Mawr about the cash prize.

Along with the Tri-Co competition, Swarthmore won third place in a national competition, called the National Campus Energy Challenge, between colleges and universities for which school could reduce energy usage the most between last February and this February. Swarthmore reduced its heating consumption by 31% and electricity by 2%, resulting in an overall reduction of 18%. Swarthmore’s drastic decline in heating energy was due to the fact that “The college used only natural gas for heating this winter, no #6 fuel oil,” according to Steen Hoyer ’09. Due to the fact that natural gas is better for the climate than #6 fuel oil, Hoyer says, “I believe the sustainability committee is going to recommend that the college permanently forswear #6 fuel oil.”

The first two place winners in the competition, Winona State University and St. John’s University, reduced their energy by 27% and 21% respectively.

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