It’s always sunny in Schenectady

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By Jefri Mesa

On your way up to or from frat row, you may notice that you are walking towards ridiculously bright lights coming from the Bailey Field.

Depending on the weather, the brightness may seem magnified, making it appear like the sun is rising.  The lights are so bright that walking past the field resembles walking through Times Square. They are definitely great lights for a stadium, but do they need to be on when they are not being used to provide light for athletic events?

Unnecessary electricity is wasted when these strong lights are left on to light the field for no one.

I understand the concern of getting assaulted around the area. According to Campus Safety, Union’s insurance company actually requires the lights as a safety precaution. Of course, it is a high-traffic area.

Although getting the insurance company to reform their policies would be difficult, there are still many alternatives that could save Union’s energy bill.

One alternative could be to allow the lights to be controlled by anyone, with a Union ID. That way the field does not stay lit when it is not in use. Another would be to have cut-off hours for the lights, and replace that sense of security a person might get from the lights with a stationed Campus Safety car or even other, smaller lights along the pathway.

These safety measures are already featured in other places on campus, why can’t they be implemented by the field too?

This goes hand-in-hand with returning from winter break, no one could help but notice one of Union’s latest big investments: The 90-inch $11,000 LED TV that replaced a fun and memorable paper calendar.

I understand that different sets of people are responsible for decisions like the light usage and the Reamer TV. However, one of Union’s big missions is to reduce its carbon footprint. Allowing the purchases of expensive televisions and lights that stay on at all times do not help us reduce our carbon footprint.

Yes, Union is made more attractive to some by the size of the televisions here, but should we care more about our display of opulence as opposed to caring for the environment?

 

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