This year the UI continues this exceed its goal of energy-consumption savings, according to Terry Ruprecht, director of energy conservation.
As long as subfreezing temperatures don't continue this winter, the university could save far more than officials initially had hoped.
"The numbers right now are very good, but in another week or so we'll have the December data; that will give us a half-year," Ruprecht said last week about the 2010 fiscal year.
In September, Inside Illinois reported that the UI saved $7.5 million at the Urbana campus in fiscal year 2009, which was $2.5 million more than projected.
Ruprecht now says consumption data shows the university is down 11.5 percent from the previous year for July through November 2009, the first five months of the current fiscal year.
"It's pretty clear the cold weather in January will off-set (the lower consumption), but nevertheless we're quite pleased about the July through November data," he said.
The campus's goal is to reduce consumption by 10 percent by June 30.
"We're actually ahead of the game," he said. "We were at 9 percent reduction by the end of '09. We almost hit our three-year goal in two."
Although many at the university would like to see the energy savings invested in new projects, the savings will probably go toward deficits in the campus budget, Ruprecht said.
"The good news is we have a way to pay down the deficit. The bad news is people would like to be able to do other things with those freed-up dollars."
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