This week has been national Energy Saving Week. The theme of the Energy Saving Week is to promote rational use of energy and materials, which TYS also strives for in the day-to-day operations. We also try to arrange for our residents to have the best possible recycling opportunities.
Energy efficiency and recycling benefits both residents as well as TYS. We have, for example, in the last year renewed the outdoor lighting of the Student Village so that only LED lights are used. Just on the western side of the Student Village, the electricity savings are equivalent to the consumption of around 20 Student Village apartments per year. Environmental friendliness will also be taken into account in new buildings – more than 600 solar panels will be installed on the roof of Aitiopaikka, which is under construction. These will also generate electricity for the needs of the Student Village.
The residents play an important role in recycling – TYS provides the framework, but the residents are responsible for the actual recycling. In 2016, the recycling rate for all TYS houses was 56%. The recycling rate is the percentage of waste recycled as secondary raw material. The remaining 44% of the waste ended up at the combustion plant to produce electricity and heat.
In our housing satisfaction survey, we received feedback asking for the possibility to recycle plastic waste. We have responded to this wish – plastic collection has started in Ispuri earlier in the autumn. In Haliskylä and Tavasti, separate collection of plastic waste started in October. Separate collection of plastic waste is being phased in to our other locations no later than next year.
By recycling as diversified as possible, the amount of combustible waste can be reduced. Correct sorting is important not only for recycling, but also for avoiding extra costs and for ensuring that the material actually is recycled. Incorrectly sorted waste can not be directly recycled, leading to additional costs. Discarded furniture, home electronics and other goods other than conventional waste can also cause unnecessary costs in the form of additional visits. For example, home appliance stores often recycle home electronics without additional charges.
Heating charges account for a significant part of TYS’s annual costs (2016: 15.7%). In our renovated housing units, we are able to follow the temperature of homes by means of house automation, which makes it possible for us to adjust the temperatures more efficiently. In September-October, we installed two heat and air humidity gauges in two of the houses in the Student Village. These aim to optimize and balance the heating of houses and ensure home comfort. Apartment-specific meters will be added step by step in the future.