Energy Conservation Ideas-We Need Your Help!
During the 2014-2015 school year, we formed an Energy Conservation Committee to look for ways that we could conserve energy in our district. The importance of taking this step was two-fold:
1.) Being good stewards of our resources is the right thing to do for our district and our planet.
2.) Consistent savings on energy costs can help lower the amount of budget reductions we’ve had to make each year and helps us keep reductions as far away from our classrooms as possible.
Our district has looked for mechanical factors to help realize energy savings for a number of years. We’ve converted a 14 of our schools to geothermal heating and air conditioning systems as furnaces and boilers need to be replaced. Our Operations Department has worked to replace florescent lighting with LED lights where ever it is practical to do so. Two of our schools have solar panels as part of their renovations last summer. The use of solar energy and geothermal HVAC are being reviewed as we make major renovations and additions in our schools.
Our district employees have helped in this effort by making changes in their daily habits, such as turning off the lights when leaving an office or conference room, turning off computers and/or printers at the end of the work day, and forgoing “convenience appliances” such as coffee makers, space heaters, mini refrigerators, etc. During the summer of 2015, we instituted a 4 day work week/10 hours per day which also netted energy savings.
The result is that our energy conservation efforts during the 2014-2015 school year accounted for a savings of over $191,000. The calculations for those savings took into account the temperature variances from the previous year and other mechanical factors. We’re pleased by these results and will continue to look for other ways we can save energy. Now we’d like to hear from the community. What ideas do you have that could help us realize energy savings? We’ve set up an special email for you to share your ideas with us at Energyideas