Niles schools honored for energy savings

Published 2:03 pm Wednesday, January 26, 2005

By Staff
NILES - The teachers and staff of the Niles Community Schools have chalked up $1 million worth of good behavior.
Their energy-efficient practices have earned big savings and now those good habits are earning the district national recognition.
Niles schools have achieved $1.1 million in cost savings in seven years since forming a strategic alliance with Energy Education, Inc., a national energy conservation company, which presented the district with the Energy Excellence Award at the School Board meeting Monday, Jan. 24.
A key benefit of the Energy Education, Inc. program is that all costs come out of the existing utility budget, with savings projected to more than pay for the program, as they have done for Niles Community Schools. Additional savings can be redirected to other parts of the district's budget. Many districts credit this program with helping keep personnel and programs that would otherwise have fallen victims to budget cuts.
As a key part of the program, district Energy Manager Richard Heemer tracks energy consumption, including electricity, water, sewer, natural gas and fuel oil, using energy accounting software.
He compares current energy use to a baseline period and calculates the amount of energy that would have been used had conservation and management practices not been implemented.
By tracking consumption and analyzing energy use, he can quickly identify and correct areas that need attention.
Energy Education, Inc.'s innovative energy conservation program is a win-win alliance that positions participating school districts to achieve substantial savings with no capital expenditure.
The company develops and implements customized energy conservation programs for public schools, enabling district to redirect saved dollars to educational opportunities and resources. Energy Education, Inc. has worked with more that 635 clients from coast to coast, helping school districts almost $1 billion in 18 years.