EcoMadness Winners!

The final results of EcoMadness 2013 are in, and we have our winners!

Congratulations, Allen/Kingston, Beecher/Vinton, Sprague and Holcomb!


Throughout the entire competition, Towers claimed first place in the water reduction category. During the first week, Beecher/Vinton was in first place, but for the rest of the competition, Allen/Kingston continued to represent Towers and overtook the water reduction category. By the end of the competition, Allen/Kingston had managed to reduce their water consumption by a very impressive 10.3%.  Sprague ended up remaining in second place for a majority of the competition, finishing with a 9.6% reduction. Similarly, Hanks of Northwest campus remained in third place for most of duration of EcoMadness and finished with a 4.9% reduction. Sprague also placed as a leader in per capita water usage with 31.9 gallons of water used per student, followed by two Northwest campus dormitories – Terry and Hanks – with 33.3 and 33.9 gallons of water used per student.


Towers, again, took over the energy reduction category for most of the competition. During the first, second and third week, Beecher/Vinton, Hamilton/Wade/Fenwick/Keller and Allen/Kingston of Towers placed high in the leaderboards.  Sprague and Shippee also placed in the energy reduction category. At the end of the competition, Beecher/Vinton placed first, Whitney placed second and Shippee placed third with a 6.4%, 6.3% and 5.2% reduction, respectively.  Holcomb, Hollister A/Hollister B and Buckley were the leaders in per capita electricity usage. Students in Holcomb used 3.2 kWh, students in Hollister A/Hollister B used 3.3 kWh and students in Buckley used 3.4 kWh of electricity.

EcoMadness Kick Off Party in East
EcoMadness Kick Off Party in East
EcoMadness Kick Off Party in NorthWest
EcoMadness Kick Off Party in NorthWest









The reductions were close, all around, with only a few gallons and kWh separating first from second and third place! Overall, however, it is thrilling to be able to see so many dormitories reduce their water and energy consumption throughout the entire course of EcoMadness. Although the competition is over, continue to keep up the great work and remember to keep conserving! And, to the winners of EcoMadness 2013, be sure to enjoy your ice cream party! You should be proud of yourself for demonstrating excellent conservation and sustainable lifestyle practices throughout the entire four weeks of the semester.

– Meredith

Are You Ready for Some Sustainability!

This week marked the beginning of the EcoMadness Competition!  We’ll be running features on EcoMadness throughout the month of October to encourage those of you who are participating! The goal is to reduce the amount of water and energy your dorm uses – we’ve been monitoring your usage during September, and we’ll be sending you updates with your usage and reduction during October.  Check with your RA or Hall Director if you’re unsure if your building is part of the competition.  If you want to be part of the competition next year, let us know where you live! If you want to be an Eco-Captain for your building, join us for our first meeting tonight – 10/3/13 – at 6:30pm in 163 Austin (formerly CLAS).  We’ll go over the basics, give you tips for motivating your fellow students, and give you a t-shirt to wear to EcoMadness events, and help get you excited to save water and energy in your dorms!

ecomadness poster1

Preparing for EcoMadness

Here at the Office of Environmental Policy, we are in the midst of preparing for this year’s EcoMadness Event.  During the month of EcoMadness, participating residence halls contend in a race to reduce their energy and water usage.  The 7th annual EcoMadness competition will kick off next week, beginning on Sunday, September 29.

There are several ways to measure energy efficiency. Observing trends in the consumption of water and electricity are only a couple of the various approaches. Imagine being able to access this kind of information at any point of the day, and being able to look back at previous energy consumption trends throughout the week, or even throughout the month. Are you a resident of Buckley, and have you ever been curious about the amount of water the entire dormitory consumes at any given day? Or, maybe you are a resident of Whitney, and are curious about how having a dining hall included in your dormitory affects total water and energy consumption?

Unbeknownst to most of the campus community, these kinds of energy statistics are available to anyone online at the campus energy dashboard. Located as a part of the UConn Facilities Operations webpage (, the campus energy dashboard, graphically and statistically, tracks various trends in water and electricity usage for buildings and residence halls on campus. At the Office of Environmental Policy, the campus energy dashboard is accessed on a regular basis. The energy statistics are compiled into spreadsheets to ultimately be used to determine the baseline water and electricity figures for the dormitories participating in EcoMadness. When EcoMadness begins, the campus energy dashboard will still be accessed in order to compare current water or electricity consumption figures to the baseline consumption figures. The dormitories that show the greatest reduction in consumption will be rewarded (with ice cream), although any reduction will be applauded (because conservation is its own reward). The primary goal of EcoMadness is to instill a behavioral change in students that will cause them to be mindful of how their everyday actions impact their carbon footprint and the environment.

By accessing the campus energy dashboard, you can always check to see how much water and energy your building is using on a daily basis. You can even compare these values to your competition’s water and energy use (We should note that our office has to make some adjustments for additional features like emergency lighting and dining halls for the official competition results).  In the future, the energy dashboards located in Oak and Laurel Hall will also be able to provide anyone on campus with access to data on water and energy consumption.  In the meantime, though, it’s time to go green with EcoMadness! Stay blue, UConn.

– Meredith and Brianna

EcoMadness Final Results 2012!

The final results on EcoMadness 2012 are in!


Throughout the competition, Buckley has held the number one spot for lowest daily per capita usage of energy, at 3.7 kWh per student per day.  Their hard work and dedication kept them in the lead, and as a reward they will have a free UConn Dairy Bar ice cream party in addition to bragging rights!

In the energy reduction category, Sherman/Webster of Towers held the lead for three weeks. However, during our double or nothing final week of competition, Whitney scrambled ahead in the final moments! They had held a top three position throughout the competition, but Whitney beat out Sherman/Webster by a slim 0.03% finishing for a 20.5% total reduction in energy consumption.

Of the 23 participating dorms, 21 successfully reduced their energy consumption by a total average of 8.5%. The average per capita use was 4.4 kWh per day.


Sprague, the new home of EcoHouse, was the clear winner for water reduction with an incredible final reduction of 21.0%! For some perspective on what a major accomplishment this was, the second place dorm reduced by 13.0%. Since the second week of competition, Sprague held its leading spot with steady improvements each week.   Another winner who held their position consistently throughout EcoMadness was Hamilton/Wade/Fenwick/Keller of Towers with an average per capita consumption of 32.0 gallons of water per day throughout the course of the competition.

Nine of the 23 dorms reduced their water consumption by an overall average of 2.9%.  Excluding the dorms whose water consumption was unchanged, the average reduction in water consumption was 7.1%.  The average per capita use of water was 39.9 gallons per day. (Converting that to its weight, the average per capita use is 334 lbs of water daily!)

An honorable mention goes out to our second and third place dorms for all four winning categories:

Per Capita Energy: Holcomb (2nd Place) and Batterson (3rd Place)
Energy Use Reduction (%): Sherman/Webster (2nd Place) and Hollister A/Hollister B (3rd Place)

Per Capita Water: Terry (2nd Place) and Spraque (33.4)
Water Use Reduction: Alsop A/Alsop B (2nd Place) and Whitney (3rd Place)

The overall final results are as follows:

Water Reduction Winner:
Sprague (21% Reduction)

Energy Reduction Winner:
Whitney (East) (20.5% Reduction)

Water Usage Per Capita Winner:
Hamilton/Wade/Fenwick/Keller (32 gallons)

Energy Usage Per Capita Winner:
Buckley (3.7 kWh)

Congratulations to all the dorms that successfully reduced their water and/or energy consumption during the course of EcoMadness.  Keep up the good work and remember to keep conserving!