The University of Texas at Austin
  • Tower Goes Dark for Longhorn Lights Out

    Published: Nov. 19, 2013

    The University of Texas at Austin Energy and Water Conservation (EWC) Program is asking the campus community to turn off lights, computers, and other equipment when leaving campus buildings for the weekend on Friday, November 22, 2013.  Called Longhorn Lights Out, this voluntary initiative demonstrates how simple, individual actions can result in significant energy savings across campus.   During the September 2013 Longhorn Lights Out, the university saved almost 17,000 kWh of electricity–equivalent to turning off 1,900 compact fluorescent bulbs and removing the greenhouse gas emissions of 2.5 cars for one year.

    In support of Longhorn Lights Out, the Tower will not be lit from sunset on Nov. 22 to dawn on Nov. 23.  The dark Tower will mark the third Longhorn Lights Out promotion and the first time the Tower has been dark for that initiative. (For safety reasons, the clock faces and aircraft warning lights on the Tower will be lit.)

    On Friday, volunteers from the student chapters of Engineers for a Sustainable World and American Society of Heating, Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Engineers (ASHRAE) will assist with turning off lights and electronics, as they did in September.  The Division of Housing and Food Service will participate as well, as part of the division’s sustainability efforts.  EWC is partnering with Texas Tower Public Relations in the College of Communications to promote the event.

    To volunteer for Longhorn Lights Out, send an email with your contact information to

    Follow Longhorn Lights Out on Facebook and on Twitter at @UTEnergyConserv (#LonghornLightsOut).

    To learn more about Longhorn Lights Out, visit Facilities Services website.   For information about other initiatives to conserve energy and water on campus, visit Energy and Water Conservation program website.

    • Quote 2
      Energy & Water Conservation said on Nov. 25, 2013 at 1:35 p.m.
      Hi Sarah- Please email us and we will send you some information about how a commercial building operate and would be happy to come by and assist on helping you reach your desired set point. Thanks for the feedback-
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      Sarah said on Nov. 22, 2013 at 3:42 p.m.
      Our UT-owned building's thermostats are set at 72 degrees year-round. We have the option of going either two degrees up or two degrees down; however setting it two degrees up (to 74) does not make a difference. Many people run space heaters as it is just too cold. I can't understand this terrible waste of energy.
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      Energy & Water Conservation said on Nov. 22, 2013 at 1:41 p.m.
      Great idea! We will be adjusting the air conditioning and heating systems to operating more efficiently and encouraging people to power down over the coming holidays, but the next official Longhorn Lights Out will be next semester. Our plan is to eventually hold Longhorn Lights Out monthly if not more often. Please continue to share your ideas with us at -Energy & Water Conservation Program
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      Marsha Gayle said on Nov. 21, 2013 at 12:25 p.m.
      Great idea, but why not extend or originate this over the holiday periods, including Thanksgiving and winter break? Thanks! -Proud Longhorn Parent!
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