Measuring the efficacy of an energy and environmental awareness campaign to effectively reduce water consumption

Open Access
Miller, Laura Little
Graduate Program:
Workforce Education and Development
Doctor of Philosophy
Document Type:
Date of Defense:
September 28, 2010
Committee Members:
  • Judith Ann Kolb, Dissertation Advisor
  • Judith Ann Kolb, Committee Chair
  • Cynthia Pellock, Committee Member
  • Wesley Edward Donahue, Committee Member
  • Pricilla Karen Murphy, Committee Member
  • sustainability
  • global warming
  • training
Increased energy costs and a move toward environmental stewardship are driving many organizations, including universities, to engage in awareness efforts to reduce both energy consumption and their carbon footprint. The purpose of this paper is to determine whether organizational programs aimed at energy and environmental awareness have a significant impact on reducing utility consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for the organization. Universities and organizations all across America are investing resources - time and money, into awareness programs, marketing campaigns, and administrative policies with hopes of reducing energy consumption thereby decreasing operations costs and emissions; very little has been published on the actual effect of such programs. Not has much been published to determine if a significant reduction in energy and GHG emissions comes from downstream behavior modifications of daily routines. Documentation is often lacking to support that an increase in energy and/or environmental awareness will reduce the consumption or the associated carbon emissions. Businesses and industries are looking to change policies and implement procedures to reduce waste, and energy consumption hoping in turn to decrease green house gas emissions. This study tries to measure the effectiveness of an energy and environmental initiative aimed at students living on campus at a large university located in the northeastern United States.