Energy Efficiency Program Pays Off Now and In The Future
FORT COLLINS, COLO - A check for $104,921.00 presented to Poudre School District officials today represents a rebate received from Platte River Power Authority for energy efficient lighting upgrades the district recently completed.
Old fluorescent light fixtures at two middle schools and seven elementary schools were upgraded with all new high-efficiency energy-saving lighting systems (see list of schools in Sidebar 1 below). In most of the schools, work covered classrooms, cafeterias, and common areas -- basically all areas except the gymnasiums. Preston Middle School was the exception where work covered just the cafeteria and gym.
All the new high-efficiency energy-saving lighting is expected to save about 470,000 kWh (kilowatt-hours) a year. This is enough electricity to power two elementary schools the size of Bacon Elementary annually.
"We can control usage, but we cannot control energy rates," says Pete Hall, director of facilities. Conservation is the common sense approach and allows us to use conservation funds to support the educational mission of the district."
"Rebates provide opportunities for savings that really help in today’s economy," said Brian Moeck, general manager of Platte River Power Authority. "In addition to reducing energy costs, the projects at the schools will improve lighting quality and thereby the learning environments."
As part of the project, PSD recycled the steel from the old light fixtures along with the old lamps and ballasts instead of disposing them in the landfill.
PSD emissions savings from the expected 470,000 kWh savings is 400 tons of carbon dioxide equivalent. The cost savings with our increased electric rates starting Jan. 1, 2010, will be approximately $30,000. The electric rate increase is the largest we've seen at approximately 8.6% for our schools, so the timing of these projects will make a substantial difference.
Projected rate increases from both Platte River and Fort Collins Utilities of approximately 4-8% per year for several years, truly does make these projects pay into the future.
PSD already has plans in the works for another energy efficiency lighting project. That project involves the installation of high-efficiency light fixtures in the gymnasiums of the seven elementary schools already mentioned plus Traut Elementary.
Platte River works closely with Fort Collins Utilities in offering a variety of rebate programs focused on energy efficiency.
Platte River Power Authority generates and delivers reliable, low-cost and environmentally responsible electricity to its owner communities of Estes Park, Fort Collins, Longmont and Loveland, Colorado, where it is distributed by each municipal utility to residents and businesses. For more information, please visit, www.prpa.org.
Located in Northern Colorado, Poudre School District is the ninth largest school district in the state with 50 schools serving more than 24,000 students educating every child, every day. PSD exists to support and inspire every child, to think, to learn, to care, and to graduate prepared to be successful in a changing world.
Blevins Middle School (new fixtures)
Laurel Elementary School of Arts and Technology
McGraw IB World School
Olander School for Project-Based Learning
Preston Middle School