Looking back at Year 1 in Greece

Thursday 19-11-2015 - 14:12

Guest article by Marina Laskari (country manager, Greece)

Greece participates in the SAVES project with two universities: the University of Athens and the Technical University of Greece.

In academic year 2014-2015, 53,725 kWh of electricity were saved in the two Greek dormitories, thus preventing more than 38 tonnes of CO2 from being emitted to the Earth’s atmosphere.

Evaluations performed with the contribution of students showed that savings have been achieved mostly from improvements in the behaviours: switching off lights in empty rooms, putting a lid on pans when cooking and boiling the kettle only with the right amount of water. In fact, putting a lid on pans was an energy saving action that most students were not aware of before the campaign.

The campaign succeeded in increasing the energy awareness of students mostly through information they received via Student Switch Off activities -namely posters, photo competitions and the climate quizzes- but also through the Student Ambassadors. The Student Ambassadors proved to be a strong asset to the campaign as they provided practical energy saving tips to less energy aware or engaged students and inspired them to act in a more energy conscious way. Students also said that seeing practical examples of what other people do to save energy, either those  who were the Student Ambassadors or students from other European dorms, had a big influence on them and helped adopt those habits.

Some structural and system limitations in both universities prevented students from saving more energy.  However, it is expected that the energy consumption information that students will receive through the live dashboard in Year 2 of the campaign will increase the capacity for energy saving.

Finally, it has been encouraging to hear that students think that they will maintain the energy saving actions they learned through Student Switch Off when they move out of halls as this can have an additional benefit for them, that of reduced energy bills.

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