Oak Creek A state energy program is helping the South Routt School District save energy and lower utility costs for district buildings.
The district was able to complete an energy audit through the Colorado Energy Office’s Energy Savings for Schools program, identifying low-cost ways to save money and energy.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, as much as 30 percent of a school district’s total energy is used inefficiently or unnecessarily.
The audit took place in May 2016 and was specifically for Soroco High School and Soroco Middle School buildings.
Some of the updates already have been put in place and will pay for themselves within the first year or two after implementation.
For example, the district is spending only $200 to upgrade hot water piping insulation, which is expected to save $530 and 130 therms of energy annually. The upgrade was identified through the audit.
The district also spent $200 to repair a dishwasher hot water heater leak, which will, in turn, save $770 and 7,800 kilowatt hours annually.
Other upgrades include the installation of programmable thermostats, rolling replacements of 32-watt fluorescent lamps with 28-watt lamps and water fixture upgrades, which are expected to save $150 and 25,000 gallons of wasted water annually at a one-time cost of $630.
In addition to the free energy audit, the Energy Savings for Schools program includes a preliminary renewable energy assessment, technical and implementation support and energy coaching. Schools also are connected to other resources that can help them meet their energy goals.
South Routt is one of 28 schools or districts in Colorado taking advantage of the program, which aims to support rural and low income schools.
To reach Teresa Ristow, call 970-871-4206, email tristow@SteamboatToday.com or follow her on Twitter @TeresaRistow