10x12 results still uncertain: Coordinator gives unofficial results in online comment - The Western Front: News

10x12 results still uncertain: Coordinator gives unofficial results in online comment

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Posted: Friday, May 10, 2013 6:04 am

Results from one of Western Washington University's Sustainability projects have yet to be officially released, and the program coordinator refuses to comment.

The project is known as the 10x12 program. It was implemented to encourage utility reduction across the campus both through operational and behavioral change. The goal was to reach a 10 percent reduction in electricity, natural gas and water consumption and landfill waste production by the end of 2012, according to the Office of Sustainability website.

Reporters and editors at The Western Front have contacted the Office of Sustainability for results of the 10x12 program since winter quarter. 

Since their scheduled release in February, the final results and numbers of this plan have been consistently delayed and pushed further from the public.

In early April, Western Sustainability Manager Seth Vidaña said this was due to the loss of an office manager. Vidaña said the data was forced behind schedule because the analysis was divided among multiple people.

An opinion piece regarding divestment was published in the May 3 issue of The Western Front and posted on the Front’s website the same day. The editorial board addressed the delay in results from the Office of Sustainability. 

The board said poor handling undermined the potential success of the program itself.

In response to the editorial, Vidaña left a comment on The Western Front website. Vidaña said the editorial board was inaccurately referencing the 10x12 program and failing to access the hard data. He referenced some statistical results from the program, although none have been made publicly available. 

“Our data shows a 9 percent drop in electricity use, a 4 percent drop in natural gas use, and a 20 percent drop in water use between 2008 and 2012,” Vidaña said in the online comment. “The goal of a 10 percent drop in utility use was set out originally as a very challenging objective; one that we might not meet, but one that could energize the campus to take personal and organizational action.”

If accurate, the results would be short of the 10 percent goal.

Vidaña declined to comment further, and director of university communications Paul Cocke was unavailable for comment. 

Western's Office of Sustainability estimated the school could annually save more than $243,000 on electricity, and approximately $42,000 on gas usage if the goals of the program were met.

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