Energy Consumption Monitors Installed in Two Residential Colleges

Monitors that will provide students with real-time information about energy consumed have been installed in Yale’s Pierson and Silliman residential colleges, the Yale Office of Sustainability has announced.

Accompanied by an educational campaign about residential energy consumption at Yale and nationwide, the monitors aim to provide students with direct and immediate awareness of the effects of their consumption decisions. Designed by Lucid Design Group, the system displays real-time data on energy used for electricity, heating, and cooling. Large, interactive touch-screen monitors that have been installed near the Pierson and Silliman dining halls allow viewers to see energy consumption patterns over time, compare between colleges, and display in unit equivalencies such as gallons of gasoline, hours of use for hairdryers, microwaves and laptops as well as the monetary. The information is also available online through a live website at:

Surveys distributed among students before and after the monitors’ installation will help to measure their effect on students’ attitudes and behaviors. The Yale Office of Sustainability has set a five percent electricity consumption reduction goal for the two colleges receiving monitors. If Pierson and Silliman colleges meet this goal, Yale Facilities will consider installing monitors in the remaining 10 residential colleges.

The real-time energy monitoring project is part of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Commitment launched by University President Richard C. Levin in 2005. Yale committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to 10 percent below 1990 levels by 2020—a 43 percent reduction from 2005 levels that will occur even as Yale increases its total square footage by 15 percent. At that time, Levin also challenged students to reduce residential college energy consumption by 15 percent over three years; students fell just short of this goal, but students have remained interested in supporting the energy reduction commitment. This latest project aims to capture student enthusiasm for reducing energy consumption by offering tangible steps for the individual and reporting.

Funding for the monitors comes from a grant received through the Rocky Mountain Institute’s Accelerating Campus Climate Initiatives program.

PRESS CONTACT: Robert Ferretti, Office of Sustainability, 203-432-1446

Share this with Facebook Share this with Twitter Share this with LinkedIn Share this with Email Print this

Media Contact

Tom Conroy:, 203-432-1345