By Sandra Rhee- Energy
This week was a time of active brainstorming and discussion for UCLA's Energy ART Team. After meeting with Energy Engineer, Sayros Yadgar, the team discussed several energy related issues that UCLA's Facilities Management was looking to address. First and foremost, the team and the faculty collectively agreed on the importance of outreach and publicity on tackling the behavioral problems of energy usage. Correspondingly, the team agreed that they would approach their project this year in a cohesive but targeted mindset of addressing publicity, product or program implementation, and research.
One particular idea the team is excited to look into is the product availability of UCLA adorned solar power phone chargers in Ackerman Student Union's Store. By promoting energy efficient and sustainable products on campus stores, the team believes that the school will see a behavioral change in student participation of sustainable practices as Bruins become better aware of the community's support for eco-products. The team is excited to look more into this project by reaching out to solar product companies and seeing if this idea is a financially feasible option. Immediate steps also include talking to faculty representatives from Ackerman Student Union to discuss the possibility of moving forward with the idea and promoting sustainable-energy merchandise in our student stores. If the idea proves to be a viable and beneficial operation, the team plans on conducting research on the behavioral and economical profits of making eco-goods readily available and advocated to consumers.
Several other topics discussed include the conversion of gas powered transportation (i.e. evening van service or weekend BruinBus) to electric vehicles, the implementation of an engaging mobile application where students could input and evaluate their energy impacts, and the employment of a sustainable dance floor for the upcoming Dance Marathon. In the team's upcoming meeting with the stakeholder, they hope to narrow and define their project.