UW Oshkosh wins statewide energy-saving challenge


Courtesy of UWO Flickr– UWO Sustainability Institute for Regional Transformations accepts an award for winning the Higher Education Kit Challenge.

Advance-Titan Staff

UW Oshkosh students and staff won the Higher Education Kit Challenge, and in doing so, saved $2,000 on their utility bills by installing products to improve energy and water efficiency in their homes.

The challenge, sponsored by Focus On Energy, provided off-campus students and staff members the opportunity to order free energy-efficient care packages containing LEDs, showerheads power strips and more. Each energy-saving pack ordered resulted in points earned for the school. In total, UWO students and staff ordered more than 240 kits, which reduced their energy use by over 14,000 kWh. This is the equivalent of saving the greenhouse gas emissions from two gasoline-powered cars driven for an entire year. 

“Our campus had a great time participating in this challenge,” said Campus Sustainability Coordinator Brad Spanbauer. “Any way we can be good stewards of our resources and educate future generations on ways to lower their monthly water and electric bills will go a long way in creating a cultural environment where sustainability is at the forefront.” 

In addition to the energy savings UWO students and staff received, Focus on Energy is giving $5,000 to UWO that will go toward energy efficiency-related projects on campus.  

“The goal of this competition was to bring greater awareness to making smart energy choices,” said Bill Plamann, energy adviser from Focus on Energy. “For some, this challenge might be the first step in their energy savings journey. Understanding the charges behind your utility bills will ultimately lay the foundation for better managing future energy consumption.” 

UWO came in first in the competition with a score of 6.56%, based on total kits ordered using the designated school’s promo code.

Other participating colleges in the challenge and their rankings include:

Marquette University, second with 0.99%

UW-River Falls, third with 0.48%

UW-Green Bay, fourth with 0.47%

UW-Stevens Point, fifth with 0.45%

UW-Madison, sixth with 0.21%

UW-Stout, seventh with 0.14%

Learn more about the challenge at focusonenergy.com/business/highedchallenge.