DCU Unplugged image
DCU Unplugged is a new sustainability campaign to save energy and help protect the environment

Wrap-up, power off and pull the plug - DCU launches new sustainability campaign for staff and students

DCU is encouraging staff and students to 'wrap-up, pull the plug and power off’ as part of a new sustainability campaign to save energy and help protect the environment

The university surpassed its overall 2020 public sector energy objectives by over 26 points, achieving an overall energy performance improvement of 59% against a 33% public sector requirement.

However, DCU’s 2030 goals are more ambitious, with a requirement to reduce its absolute energy related carbon emissions by 50%. To meet such a target, the university needs the entire staff and student community to support this programme of targets.

Led by the Estates Energy Team, in partnership with Sustainability DCU and Communications and Marketing, DCU Unplugged will challenge and remind everybody within the community to pull the plug and save energy with the aim of reducing consumption, cost and carbon. 

Speaking at the launch, Richard Kelly DCU Estates Manager, said:

“DCU is both an exemplar and a leading public sector organisation in terms of energy cost, consumption and carbon emissions reductions. Over the last 15 years we have managed to save over €8 million in avoided energy costs through a series of no and low-cost conservation measures, and all of this whilst our campuses and student population continue to grow.  

Since incorporation in 2016, we now enjoy a much-reduced annual energy bill of over €300,000 less per annum, and this has led to success with several high-profile industry award wins.  And it’s not just about energy targeting; water conservation is also high on the priority list, and our savings over the past few years were rewarded recently with a prestigious Green Award for substantially reducing water consumption across all of our campuses. We want this awareness campaign to build on our success to date and deliver new collaborative and engagement savings to continue our fight against carbon.

Sustainability reflects not only our commitment to play our part as a responsible university, but also our realisation of the messages we can convey as an exemplar organisation to our staff, our students and society around us.  

DCU is wholly committed to addressing our global environmental responsibilities and providing a sustainable campus for all, and very importantly one that develops in line with all of the UN Sustainable Development Goals to create a better future for us all.  However, this can only be achieved with the full support from every single one of us. We are all in this together, so by making very simple changes to our daily routines, such as powering off our laptops or switching off the lights, we can make a real difference.  Let’s all play our part in protecting the environment and by making DCU an energy conscious university continuing to lead the way in sustainability.” 

What can staff and students do?

  • Power off - Switch off your computer and monitor fully rather than using sleep mode, which still uses energy.  Think about the difference if everybody did this.
  • Pull the plug on all non-essential devices before you leave campus. Take a moment before you leave to unplug anything that uses electricity that will not be in use at night-time, during weekends and on university closures. This might include photocopiers, printers, kettles, chargers and AV equipment.
  • Switch off before you take off - If you’re last to leave, switch off the light!
  • Where’s me jumper? Wrap up and wear a jumper instead of turning on your office heater.

Share details on social media of how you are supporting using #DCUUnplugged and visit dcu.ie/unplugged for some energy-saving hacks to use at home and on campus.