Information on dealing with the energy crisis

The current energy crisis once again challenges us enormously as a society, but also as the University of Erfurt itself. Against the background of our responsibility to society as a whole, but also taking into account concrete requirements on the part of the state and the federal government, we are obligated to make significant energy savings. These savings measures affect teaching on the one hand, but also the everyday work of the university staff.

On this website you will find current information on energy-saving measures at the University of Erfurt and tips on how everyone can make a meaningful contribution to reduced consumption. The content is updated on an ongoing basis. However, we ask for your understanding that in these challenging times we are not able to answer some questions immediately, but that we have to consult with you again and again before we can provide you with reliable information.

"We not only have a duty to save energy, but also a responsibility to society as a whole!"

statement of the Presidium on the energy-saving measures at the University of Erfurt


What does the University of Erfurt do to save energy?

We have already done a lot in recent years to improve our energy balance, for example by replacing thermostats on radiators, switching to LED lighting, optimizing the cooling supply in our server rooms, replacing old heating pumps with efficient pumps, and with our photovoltaic system on employee building 1, which we have also been using to generate our own energy and save CO2 since 2011. Nevertheless, further measures are necessary to achieve the energy savings targets.

In the course of individual energy savings, employees, but also all students and guests of the university are currently asked to pay attention to the following:

  • heat rooms to a maximum of 19 degrees Celsius.
  • set radiators to "1" when leaving the room (not to "*")
  • keep radiators clear
  • keep doors and windows closed
  • ventilate the room with a push instead of a tilt
  • use cold water instead of hot
  • do not wash dishes by hand or under running water, but use the dishwasher if available
  • switch off (media) technology and lights after use or when leaving the room
  • unplug chargers when not in use

In addition, during the weeks surrounding the Christmas season, from December 19, 2022 to January 14, 2023, attendance on campus will be reduced as much as possible in order to significantly reduce energy consumption. During this time, all employees will be asked to work as far as possible from home or on the move, provided that the necessary requirements are met (suitable job profile and appropriate technical requirements, as well as ensuring a working method that complies with data protection regulations and an ergonomic workstation at home). In addition, we will change teaching from face-to-face to online teaching and shorten the opening hours of the university library.

For which period does the "extended Christmas break" apply?

Classroom operations on campus will be suspended as much as possible from December 19, 2022 to January 16, 2023.

For students, this will extend the two-week lecture-free period by two weeks of online teaching (one before and one after the regular lecture break). Employees are to switch to working from home as much as possible during the aforementioned time.

Who decides on the energy-saving measures at the University of Erfurt?

Overall, the University of Erfurt is making great efforts to master the difficult balancing act between the required energy-saving measures and the desire for the best conditions for studying, teaching and research in the current situation. To this end, an energy crisis team meets regularly under the leadership of the acting Head of Administration, which includes not only professors, but also representatives from the areas entrusted with implementing measures, as well as the Staff Council and, of course, the Student Council. The crisis team gathers the necessary information, assesses the current situation and makes proposals to the Presidium, which then makes all necessary decisions - if necessary, also after consultation with the relevant committees.

What applies to employees during the "extended Christmas break"?

For this purpose, Department 2: Human Resources has issued a corresponding employee information, which you can find on our website - together with further information on the topic of working from home.

Link to the message

As a student, can I still work on campus during the "extended Christmas break"?

Yes. To compensate for the loss of work opportunities on campus due to the closure of the University Library on weekends until the end of the year, the University of Erfurt will allow students to use rooms 0007 and 0012 in the Audimax building and thus also the WLAN on campus. As of January 2, 2023, the workstations in the University Library will also be available again to the full extent.

In addition, during the "extended Christmas break", Music students will also be able to rehearse in the rooms in Puschkinstraße.

How much energy can the university save by closing its library on weekends by the end of the year?

By temporarily closing the library on weekends, we can significantly save energy, namely electricity alone to the tune of approximately 10,000 kWh per month (roughly equivalent to the annual consumption of a four-person household) plus heating.

By the way: The operation of the university library consumes a good third of the total energy on campus. This makes the library - followed by the lecture halls - our biggest consumer.

How many people usually visit the library on weekends?

The usage figures make the restrictions on library opening hours on weekends seem entirely justifiable: While up to 1,400 admissions to the university library can currently be counted on regular working days, the statistical average on weekend days is between 100 and around 200, whereby the library is primarily visited on weekends as a quiet workplace and less for "physical" media borrowing.

In view of this, the University of Erfurt is enabling its students to use two large heated rooms in the Audimax building (rooms 0007 and 0012) as a substitute for work on weekends until the end of the year and also to access the campus WLAN there. This is intended to compensate for the loss of workstations in the UB with significantly lower energy consumption.

Are campus service facilities open during the "extended Christmas break"?

We have summarised the opening hours for you in a news item.

Where can I get information about saving energy?

We have compiled further links for you:


Against the backdrop of the current debate on energy-saving measures in the winter semester 2022/23, the University of Erfurt acknowledges its responsibility to society as a whole. In this regard, the Presidium declares:

The University of Erfurt will go on an "extended Christmas break" from December 19, 2022 to January 16, 2023. This means that before and after the semester break (i.e. from December 19 to 23 and from January 9 to 14), courses will be held online and…

The current energy crisis once again poses enormous challenges to us as a society and to the University of Erfurt. Even though universities in Germany are among the most protected institutions in terms of energy supply, we are called upon to make…

The Erfurt University Library plans to return to its regular operations after the turn of the year - that is, from January 2, 2023. This means that the library will then once again be open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays and will also be open for…

Scientific contributions on the topic of "Climate Change and Energy Transition"

By the way: In our annual theme we are currently dealing with "Climate Change and Energy Transition". You can find various contributions from our scientists on our research blog "WortMelder".

Link to the blog (in German only)

We also provide information on the topic of sustainability on our website: Here you can also find flyers with energy saving tips as well as information about sustainability actors and projects on campus.