Chambersburg Area School District (CASD) covers a 250-square-mile radius and educates a population of more than 8,700 students. The district partners with families and the community to prepare students for success as responsible citizens and lifelong learners. CASD partnered with Energy Education, Inc. in July 2007 to begin a proactive approach to lowering utility costs and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. All employees and students have become better stewards of their resources, and the district's energy efficiency has saved taxpayer funds and increased district awareness of energy usage at school, work, and home. The district has been an ENERGY STAR Partner since 2009.
Chambersburg Area School District has been recognized as an ENERGY STAR Leader for improving energy efficiency by more than 30 percent compared to a 2007 baseline and as a Top Performer for achieving an average ENERGY STAR energy performance score of 92 across its portfolio of buildings. In addition, each school building in the district has earned the ENERGY STAR. CASD's energy efficiency improvements owe much to the efforts of the district's Building and Grounds Department, Technology Department, Food Services Department, and custodial staff members. CASD conducts regular building audits of all facilities; maintains a utility database using E-CAP software; uses Portfolio Manager, EPA's ENERGY STAR measurement and tracking tool; and communicates daily with maintenance and custodial staff members on building energy use. The district also engages students and staff members by communicating energy savings progress, tips, and suggestions with district-wide monthly e-newsletters. The district also holds energy-related contests for students in order to encourage their awareness of energy use at school and at home. By transforming the way the district uses energy, CASD has saved more than $2.5 million. Compared to its baseline year, the district currently prevents the emissions of more than 1,200 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually, which is equivalent to the carbon sequestered by more than 33,000 tree seedlings planted and grown for 10 years.
The district's conservation efforts helped it earn three monumental achievements in 2012, including:
-- Pennsylvania Governor's Environmental Excellence Award
-- Pennsylvania State Green Ribbon School Award and National Green Ribbon School distinction for one elementary school in the district
-- Shippensburg School Study Council's Exemplary Program Award
Each day, CASD continues to "grow greener." The district's efforts to improve energy efficiency and control costs help preserve student programs, save teaching positions, and improve the environment in the process. CASD's proactive approach to improving energy efficiency has strengthened the district's knowledge of energy conservation, enabled individuals to carry over and apply similar concepts to their own energy use at home, and helped the surrounding rural community with the ever present challenge of education funding by helping to save on utility costs.