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School District Saves $1 Million Through Energy Conservation!

2 April 2013

SCORE! Another success story to show the positive impact energy conservation can have on communities. The best part is this program didn’t involve investing in new heating systems in order to save a million dollars. It was based heavily on simple behavior changes:

Several energy specialists were quick to point out that while they work with some technology, the program is really very people based.
Much of the energy specialist’s work involves getting teachers and other staff on board with watching their energy use and doing that little bit of extra work before they head home.

This program took place at Elkhart Community Schools in Indiana, with the help of Centergistic- an energy conservation company in the area. As the quote shows above, much of the program relied on a little more work from teachers. Teachers were asked to do just four things before they left for the day:  42aclose window blinds, keep doors closed and shut off all electronics and turn off all lights. Doesn’t sound like much, but when it costs $87 to run one computer all year, it can quickly add up to significant savings.

I love this story because it proves that schools and communities don’t necessarily need to do large structural investments to conserve energy. There are still significant gains to be made through simple actions alone. This doesn’t mean it is simple or easy to get people to participate in these actions. It takes motivated individuals to push and make this happen!

Want to get this kind of action started in your school or community? The Minnesota Energy Challenge is always a simple and fun way to start!

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