Talkin’ Trash, March 2011 – You Dark Up My Life Special

Turn Off, Tune In and Drop Out
(apologies to M. McLuhan…the medium is the message indeed!)

One million dollars. A million smackaroos. Megabucks. Enough to keep five UHN hospital beds open for a year.

One hour. Sixty minutes. Two-thirds of a movie. About 59 minutes too much hockey for most Leaf games.

Talk about a non-sequitur…”What, you may ask, do $1 million and one hour have in common?” (yeah, yeah, I know…the Leafs, million dollar salaries, fifty-nine minutes too much hockey…)

Well, let’s start with the million dollar question…for $1 million is the lofty goal UHN has set for energy savings for the coming year.

And how, you may ask, is UHN going to achieve such a lofty goal? Why, with a little TLC, of course.

You see, for those who don’t remember, TLC (which originally stood for “Thermostats, Lights & Controls”, but we’re starting to like “Turn-off Lights & Computers” – what do you think?) is UHN’s integrated, comprehensive, free-range, 100% organic energy management program, that combines a little of the techie side of saving energy (you know, like installing light switches, and those sort of things) and a little of the people side of saving energy (you know, like getting people to use those light switches).

Over the next few months, and using a little TLC, we’re aiming for three things:

  • Continuing to “retro-commission” our buildings, which is an Energy Manager show-off way of saying that we’re going to run the equipment and systems we already have as efficiently as possible.
  • “Re-investing” in our environment, which is Energy Manager pretending to be Financial Manager speak for saying that, where possible, we’re going to replace the equipment and systems we already have with new, more efficient equipment and systems.
  • Adding more energy to TLC’s “awareness and engagement” program, which is Energy Manager wannabe behavioural psychologist speak for saying that we’re going to ask people to turn off lights & computers and stuff like that.

And this is where the one hour fits in. Sure, we’re going to have posters and reminders and TLC Champions and stuff like that…but before that comes Earth Hour where, for one hour this Saturday, March 26, from 8:30 – 9:30 p.m., we have a chance to turn-off the lights, tune-in to our family, friends, colleagues and neighbours and drop-out of the electrical grid for a short time along with millions of people around the world (and our TGH, TWH and PMH Facilities departments).

Sure, it’s a symbolic gesture and no, Earth Hour on its own isn’t going to rid us of our energy issues…but if we can’t even be bothered to take this step, then how are we ever going to save that million dollars?

And besides, at least you know when you shut off Hockey Night In Canada for a short time, you won’t be missing much…

Go, Leafs, Go…
-ed

Links To The Inside (will only work on UHN network computers)

Links To The Outside

Links To Nowhere In Particular

  • Reimer rocks, but the Leafs ain’t gonna make the playoffs.   Sorry.

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