Environmental Protection

EPA Emphasizes the Savings to Schools through Energy Star

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is encouraging school districts to take the Energy Star Challenge , a pledge to improve the energy efficiency of our nation’s buildings.

More than 500 school districts across the country already are reducing their energy use with help from Energy Star.

The annual energy bill to operate America’s primary and secondary schools totals nearly $8 billion — more than is spent on textbooks and computers combined. Schools that take the Energy Star Challenge can use energy tracking tools, technical guidance, case studies, and other resources to improve energy efficiency.

Nearly 2,000 schools have earned EPA’s Energy Star label for superior energy efficiency, including some in Oregon’s Gresham-Barlow School District, which cut energy use by 48 percent. In one year, the district saved more than $1.3 million in utility costs, the equivalent of 24 fulltime teachers’ salaries. Council Rock, a school district in Pa., has reduced its energy use by 40 percent since 2005, mostly through improved operations and maintenance of building systems. In a three-year period, the district saved more than $4.7 million.

Energy Star has teamed with Parent Teacher Organization (PTO) Today, a national organization dedicated to supporting family involvement in education. Together with Energy Star, PTO Today offers "Go Green Night" activities to the nation’s parent-teacher organizations, to help families learn about saving energy together.

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