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Computer Energy Use Creates Challenges in Educational Facilities

Feb. 3, 2016

Role of technology, power consumption increases in schools.

The amount of computers in education buildings continues to grow, creating a new challenge for facilities professionals. According to the results of the EIA’s Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Survey, computers per square foot increased by 71% from 1999 to 2012 in schools and are now used in 95% of education buildings. This is an 89% increase since 2003 when the survey was last conducted. With this significant growth, educational facilities now only trail office buildings for most computers per square foot.

The 2012 version of the survey was the first to collect data about TV/video display and interactive whiteboard usage in facilities. Video displays are the most prevalent in higher education while interactive whiteboards are typically used in elementary and middle schools. Though the report’s authors note that new devices are typically more energy efficient than older ones, the average consumption for all devices is still significant: 1,252 kWh for TV or video displays, 469 kWh for desktop computers, and around 24 kWh for laptops.

You can’t get rid of technology, but you can minimize its effect on your energy bill! Check out these tips to correctly manage plug loads.

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