Energy Sustainability

Energy Sustainability is one of the Environmental Policy directives. Rhodes University is committed to reducing its ecological footprint in terms of its energy usage strategies. RU Infrastucture and Operations Division is responsible for implementing water sustainability measures in line with the Policy. This includes:

1. Monitor and minimise the university’s electricity consumption.
2. Implement the best available energy technology for all new buildings and in existing structures wherever possible and affordable.
3. Promote electricity efficiency practices and reduction of the university’s carbon footprint to all stakeholders.


Staff, students and citizens are encouraged to follow these energy saving guidelines:

  • Switch off lights when not needed / when you leave the room.
  • Switch off heaters and other appliances when not needed / when you leave the room.
  • Use fans instead of air conditioners (or set air con temp no lower than 22oC).
  • Hang washing on the clothes line instead of using a tumble dryer.
  • Report excessive heating / cooling in computer laboratories to the IT Division Public Lab Administrator (Zanele Silala x8674 / z.silala(at)
  • Use CFLs (compact fluorescent lighting) to save energy (instead of incandescent light bulbs). NB: CFLS require safe disposal practices .
  • Computer monitors should be set to go on standby / switch off when not in use.
  • Shut down computer overnight (a computer monitor left on overnight wastes enough energy to laser print 800 pages).
  • Close doors and windows and ensure they are properly sealed.
  • Unplug cell phone chargers, etc, when not in use.
  • Set geyser thermostat at 55oC. Install geyser blankets and insulate all external hot water pipes.
  • Shower instead of bath (a shower uses one fifth of the energy of a standard bath).
  • Movement sensor lamps outdoors are better than lights left on all night.
  • Electric blankets use less energy than heaters.
  • Not permitted in residences: bar heaters, toasters, snackwich makers, electric frying pans, immersion heaters, fridges, TV braais, hot plates, and other appliances with high electricity demand.

Sustainable Energy Ideas
Sustainable energy: Invest in it, and save a fortune in heating, cooking and washing costs.
Dirty energy: Divest and reduce dependence on fossil fuel.


 Light Bulb Comparison

Types of light bulbs  Light Emitting Diode   Compact Fluorescent Light   Incandescent 
 Lifespan  Long  Medium Short
 Energy used (Watts)  3–10 W (10%)  9–24 W (24%)  40–100 W (100%)
Approx running cost (per year)  R18–R35  R28–R66  R103–R258
 Durability  Good  Poor (break easily)  Poor (break easily)
 Mercury content  Negligible  Low  Zero


Last Modified: Thu, 06 Feb 2020 16:07:47 SAST