Salt Lake City School District educates more than 23,000 students in 35 school buildings representing approximately 3.9 million square feet of floor space. District leaders believe that education should be an adventure in which every child is thrilled to learn and has access to a rich array of possibilities. The primary objective and commitment is to help all children succeed. Salt Lake City School District views energy efficiency as an important opportunity to teach students about good stewardship of the environment, as well as a way to reduce operating costs. As a result, the district strives to conserve energy and maximize energy efficiency. An ENERGY STAR partner since 2009, the district has used ENERGY STAR tools and resources to come closer to attaining its energy goals.
Salt Lake City School District earned ENERGY STAR Leaders recognition for improving its energy efficiency by more than 10 percent throughout the district compared to a 2008-2009 baseline. In addition, the district was also recognized by EPA as a Top Performer for achieving an average ENERGY STAR score of 79 for its portfolio of 35 buildings. This improvement has saved the district approximately $250,000 and resulted in the elimination of more than 1,400 metric tons of greenhouse gases, equivalent to the emissions from more than 275 cars or planting 300 acres of trees. To achieve these savings, the district decided to hire an Energy and Resource Manager in September 2009. Since then, there has been a district-wide push to implement energy efficiency measures while promoting the benefits of energy conservation. All faculty and staff have been educated regarding annual energy-related cost and use and encouraged to do their part to help reduce wasted energy use. American Reinvestment and Recovery Act (ARRA) grant monies were used along with utility incentive monies to offset more than half of a $230,000 lighting retrofit project. This retrofit alone has reduced annual electricity consumption by more than 480,000 kWh. A new computer policy now automatically puts monitors into a sleep mode after 10 minutes of no use rather than screen saver mode, eliminating wasted energy while students are not using computers. Variable frequency drives (VFDs) and other efficiency measures have been installed or implemented to reduce the energy intensity of the HVAC systems. Lastly, adjustments were made to setback temperatures and occupied schedules so systems operate more closely to the occupied schedules and maintain comfortable temperatures.