Holiday Energy Saving Initiative

Since 2005, NC State’s Holiday Energy Savings Initiative (HESI) has safely lowered building temperatures and utility costs in unoccupied campus buildings during the winter holiday period when the university is closed for about 10 consecutive days. 

The extended break between the fall 2020 semester and the spring 2021 semester allowed for an expanded holiday energy savings program.

  •  Temperatures in classrooms and teaching labs were lowered Nov. 25 – Jan. 18.
  •  Temperatures in all university buildings not exempt from the program ere lowered Nov. 26 – Jan. 3.
  • Additionally, parking deck lighting were set back Dec. 24 – Jan. 3.

An exemption process was available for specific buildings.

Program Results

To date, the program has saved the taxpayers of North Carolina more than $4 million. Read more about the program’s success in 2020-2021.

Ways To Save

Here are steps you can take to help maximize energy savings over winter holiday.

  1. Save and secure. Shut exterior windows and doors to boost security and energy efficiency.
  2. Hit the switch. Turn off overhead and task lighting before leaving your office, residence hall or lab.
  3. Pull the plug. Turn off nonessential electronics such as coffee makers, toasters, radios, fans, printers, scanners and other small appliances. Consider also powering down your computer and unplugging desk-side devices or chargers.
  4. Clear the fridge. If you don’t want to return to a smelly break room refrigerator in January, consider cleaning before you leave for winter holiday. Empty refrigerators can be defrosted and left unplugged for energy savings (be sure to leave the door open).
  5. Shut the sash. Lab users should close all fume hood sashes and power down non-essential lab equipment. Because labs use more energy than any other type of campus building, small efforts here can make a big difference in energy costs.