The Lake Stevens School District (LSSD) was recognized as an Energy Star leader by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its energy conservation efforts. This is the third consecutive year that the district has received recognition from the EPA.
Energy Star Leaders must meet one of two energy efficiency improvement milestones. The first milestone requires a 10 percent improvement in energy performance across their entire building portfolio, and subsequent recognition is given for each 10 percent improvement thereafter. The second milestone, known as “top performer,” requires the buildings in an organization’s portfolio, on average, to perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide.
To be eligible for Energy Star Leaders recognition, organizations are required to track and submit energy performance data for all buildings and fuel sources through EPA’s Energy Star Portfolio Manager tool.
The district’s energy conservation efforts began in 2010 when LSSD entered into a partnership with Cenergistic and hired a resource conservation specialist to implement a comprehensive energy program. The success of the program is attributed to key elements including behavioral changes, such as turning off equipment, lights and computers when not in use; modifying and fine-tuning building automation system building schedules; performing lighting retrofits and controls upgrades; and adapting system-wide temperature standards.
A combination of staff training and building auditing has helped promote energy efficiency and teach people to make wise decisions about energy on a daily basis in order to help improve the district’s impact on the environment.
Since the inception of the energy management program, LSSD has avoided more than $2 million in total utility costs by reducing usage of kilowatts, therms of natural gas, water, irrigation and sewer costs. Environmentally, this equates to removing 1,681 cars off the road for one year or planting 239,621 pine trees and allowing them to grow for 10 years.
Additionally, LSSD was recognized by the Snohomish County Public Utility District for being a 10 percent Energy Challenge Achiever from January 2010 to March 2013. LSSD joined the challenge in March 2010 and exceeded the 10 percent mark in 12 of the 13 quarters. In 11 of the 13 total quarters, LSSD obtained at least 20 percent or more in energy savings and topped 30 percent in six of the quarters.
“All Lake Stevens School District employees and students should be applauded for their conservation success as we continue to eliminate energy waste and preserve savings for educational programs,” said Barbara Ossowski, Resource Conservation Specialist.