SALT LAKE CITY — The three high schools in Salt Lake City School District are reaping rewards from a green energy challenge.
The five-month Go Green Earn Green Energy Challenge was conceived by Superintendent McKell Withers and implemented by the district’s energy and resource manager, Greg Libecci.
The goal was to reduce power consumption at East, Highland and West high schools by up to 30 percent. Schools were rewarded by receiving 75 percent of the monetary savings seen on their utility bills. East High earned $14,646, Highland High earned $11,721, and West High earned $12,806
“This wasn’t rocket science,” Libecci said. “The task was simple: Save energy by turning things off when they were not in use. By paying attention to heating and cooling schedules, lights, computers, printers and copiers, and turning them off when not in use or when they wouldn’t be used in the near future, we saw significant power savings.”
After five months, the results were compiled and compared with a five-year baseline. On average, the schools saw a 21.2 percent decrease in overall power consumption. A large portion of the savings came from a 12.6 percent drop in peak demand, the time during each bill cycle when the greatest amount of energy is used at each school. It adds up to 1.15 million pounds of CO2, or the equivalent of taking 115 cars off the road, according to the district.