Representatives of the Vermont Department of Education, the Vermont Superintendents Association, and the Environmental Protection Agency joined Efficiency Vermont to recognize 22 schools that received an Energy Star designation for meeting stringent standards for energy use. The number of Energy Star-certified schools in Vermont tripled over the past year.
With the 11 schools recognized in 2013 as Vermont’s first Energy Star schools, about 10 percent of Vermont schools are now certified. Top-rated Energy Star schools spend $0.40 less per square foot in energy costs than an average school. For a 50,000 square foot school, this equals about $20,000 in annual savings.
Over the last 14 years, Efficiency Vermont and the Vermont Superintendents Association’s School Energy Management Program have supported more than 1,200 energy efficiency projects at over 350 schools. In the area of renewable energy, Vermont has pioneered the use of modern wood heating systems, and more than 54 Vermont schools currently use wood for heating fuel.
The groups also celebrated the continued progress of Project Green School, an initiative that aims to help all Vermont schools achieve the Energy Star designation.