Utrecht University continues reduce heating

In April this year, we communicated about the heating reduction. Between April and May, the heating was steadily reduced by two degrees Celsius, from 21 degrees to 19 degrees. This follows from a call from the Dutch government on civilians, corporations, and institutions to reduce the dependency on Russian gas. At the same time, by lowering heating we also contribute to the climate goals of the university.

The effect

Every degree reduction saves 7% of natural gas in a household. As a university, we use about 20 million m3 of gas a year. Translated, this means a saving of 1.5 to 3 million m3 of gas! To put this into perspective: an average middle-class house uses about 1350 m3 of gas per year. This means that with a reduction of two degrees, the university can supply around 1100 households with gas.

Tips for working and studying comfortably

Wit the cold days approaching, we do think it is important that you can keep working and/or studying comfortably. Therefore, we would like to offer some tips to keep you warm:

  • extra layer of clothing: to start with the most obvious tip, put on an extra layer of clothing. For example, bring a cardigan or jumper that you can put on over your clothes if you are (too) cold;
  • close unused spaces: closing unused offices and other rooms creates a kind of barrier, preventing air circulation. As a result, less heat is lost;
  • drink plenty of hot drinks: A cup of coffee or tea? Keep 'em coming! Warm drinks keep your body nice and warm, even if you have to sit still a lot. A cup of soup between meals is also a good alternative;
  • get enough exercise, e.g. by taking a walk in the open air: you wouldn't think it, but even a little exercise can keep you warm. For example, take an outdoor walk during your break. Healthy and fun.

Individually adjusting the thermostat

In some buildings, it is still possible to adjust the thermostat yourself. We also hear sounds that this happens regularly. We would kindly like to ask those who do so not to turn up the thermostat.

Sustainability targets government and university

By lowering heating, the university responds to the governmental campaign ‘Zet ook de knop om’ (in Dutch). In doing so, UU has been working on ways to reduce gas consumption. For example, some of the buildings are heated with thermal energy storage and during maintenance tasks we always look at how we can increase sustainability.

If you have any questions or feedback, please use the FSC Request Form.