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What can I do as an employee?

As an employee of the university, you can have a decisive influence on the success of the energy-saving campaign!

The university is doing what it can to save energy. Some measures to reduce the consumption of electricity and heating have already been taken centrally. We kindly ask you to help us double the efficiency of these measures! Every coffee machine and kettle that you use and every light that you switch on consumes energy. Even seemingly small measures will quickly add up and help save energy. You can make a difference every time you switch something off. It will all depend on your cooperation. Together we can make huge energy savings at the university!

And remember: We can make a difference!

Our tips for saving energy:


  • Turn off the lights when you leave your workplace.

  • Turn off any lights in unused rooms and WCs.

  • Please only use artificial light when it is really needed because natural light is often sufficient.

  • Turn off the lights in unused corridors and hallways where possible. Only switch on the lights when you are actually using the corridors and hallways.

  • Check whether it is possible to set the lights to turn off automatically.

  • Inform your manager if you are using old and power-hungry equipment (such as old light bulbs).


Electricity and equipment

Unused computers, monitors and other equipment should be disconnected from the power supply (e.g. at the end of the working day or when you are away for a long period of time). A computer uses around 10 watts of power in standby mode over a 22-hour period.

  • Check which everyday appliances in your department (such as coffee machines or dishwashers) are not essential or whether too many of the same appliances are being used. Do you use several refrigerators but you could move the contents into one or two refrigerators?

  • Set refrigerators and freezers designed for everyday use to the highest possible temperature (refrigerator +8 °C, freezer -18 °C). Regularly check the temperature and the seals. Defrost the refrigerators and freezers in good time as this will save electricity.

  • This does not apply to technical or scientific equipment! Please speak to the manager responsible for your department, subject area or institute for further information. She or he can tell you which pieces of equipment can be switched off.


  • If possible: Please set the heating or thermostatic radiator valve to 19°C.
    Thermostatic radiator valves: Set the valve to one mark lower than the setting "3" (3 = 20°C, one mark is approximately 1°C). Reducing the room temperature by 1 °C will save around 6% in heating energy.
  • Wear warm clothing so that you don’t freeze in the winter when the room temperature is set to 19°C. Avoid draughts.
  • Please switch off the heating before you stop work for the day.
  • The use of additional electric heaters is strictly prohibited. If the efficient use of electric heaters can be justified in special cases (e.g. to enable the use of individual rooms outside of normal working hours), you are permitted to use permanently installed heaters with temperature controls and timers.
  • Do not block or cover radiators! Curtains or furniture in front of a radiator will have an insulating effect. This means that the room will not warm up properly despite the fact that energy is still being consumed.
  • Close the door to your office. Otherwise you will also be heating the hallway of your department. It is better to close the doors and only heat the areas in which you work.
  • Close roller shutters, window blinds and curtains before you stop work for the day: If it is cold outside, most of the heat will be lost through the glass and window frames. According to the German Environment Agency, you can reduce the heat lost through windows by more than 20 percent simply by closing the roller shutters. You can reduce heat loss even further by closing the curtains or blinds.
  • Air conditioning systems should only be used to cool special areas (e.g. IT, technical and research areas) when the indoor temperature reaches 26°C. The air conditioning systems in normal office areas should be switched off.
  • It is prohibited to use fans.
  • Air rooms in the cool morning hours during hot spells. Make sure that there is a constant flow of air through the opened windows. Close the windows again when it gets hot outside. Cover or shade the windows if possible.
  • If you work in a mechanically ventilated or air conditioned room, you should keep all the windows and doors closed.

Air the rooms

  • Please open the windows fully to air your workplaces in the winter or open windows on opposite sides of the building for cross ventilation. Open the windows for 5 to 10 minutes to let fresh air into the room.
  • Please do not leave the windows on tilt in cool temperatures! Otherwise the heat will simply be lost through the window without you properly airing the room.

Working digitally

Conscious behaviour when using digital devices and tools can help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save energy.

Search engines: Every single search entry requires the use of several servers that pass information back and forth. A single Google search produces between 0.2 and 7 grams of carbon dioxide emissions. Seven grams is roughly equivalent to driving a car 15 metres.

Video streaming: One hour of video streaming produces 55 grams of carbon dioxide emissions – roughly equivalent to using an average kettle three times.

Emails: emails sent to multiple contacts or containing large amounts of data can generate up to 50 grams of carbon dioxide.

What you can do:

  • Stream on a smaller screen (the carbon footprint of streaming on a 50-inch TV is about 4.5x that of streaming on a laptop).
  • Limit streaming to content you really want to watch and avoid running apps in the background.
  • Regularly empty your inbox, spam box and unsubscribe from unnecessary newsletters. Clear your search history and clear caches regularly.
  • Consider using Ecosia as your primary search engine. Here, emissions generated are offset by planting trees.
  • Use your current device as long as possible (wait to buy the latest technology).
  • Recycle/repair "broken" electronics
  • Unplug devices when they are charged.

Be informed and develop your own ideas

Contact us!

For further questions, please see the "Questions and answers" page. If you do not find what you are looking for there, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are happy to receive tips, answer questions and provide further information on saving energy: Contact