Blue Mountain School District EPA Energy Star Leader

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency this week recognized 74 leading Energy Star organizations for their achievements in energy efficiency across their entire building portfolios in 2010, 50 of which were recognized as first time Energy Star Leaders, including the Blue Mountain School District in Schuylkill County.
            Thousands of buildings across the country are saving energy while reducing harmful air pollutants and protecting the health of Americans with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star program. 
            Through their commitment to superior energy management, these organizations together have prevented the equivalent of more than 460,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide annually and saved more than $100 million a year.   
            Blue Mountain School District, which educates approximately 3,000 students in Orwigsburg, Pa, worked with Energy Education, Inc. to implement a people-driven energy management program in 2005. This has led to a significant increase in energy efficiency and has instilled a responsible energy use ethic throughout the district's five schools.
            Blue Mountain School District has earned Energy Star Leaders recognition for improving its energy efficiency by 40 percent. The district has been previously recognized for achieving a 30 percent improvement and has also earned Leaders Top Performer recognition for achieving an average energy performance score of 88 across its entire portfolio of buildings. 
            Blue Mountain School District has also earned the Energy Star label for superior energy performance for all five of its buildings. Since its baseline year of 2004, Blue Mountain School District has realized more than $1.5 million dollars in avoided energy costs.  
            This year alone the district has preventing more than 1,500 metric tons of CO2 from entering the atmosphere, which is equivalent to the planting of more than 400 acres of trees.
            Staff, faculty, and students in the district have implemented hundreds of improvements in energy consumption habits, such as turning off lights and computers when not in use and shutting classroom doors. Electronic monitoring of all systems ensures optimal performance. 
            The district's energy efficiency efforts have been led by the schools energy educators or managers with ongoing on-site training and oversight from Energy Education's engineers and specialists.
            To be an Energy Star Leader, an organization must meet one of two energy efficiency improvement milestones. The first milestone requires a 10 percent improvement in energy performance across the 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. 
            Two organizations have taken Energy Star Leaders to new heights, becoming the first to improve energy efficiency across their building portfolios by 40 and 50 percent. These organizations are Blue Mountain School District in Pennsylvania and DeKalk County Central Unified School District in Indiana, respectively. 
            The complete list of Energy Star Leaders includes more than 150 school districts, commercial real estate companies, healthcare systems, supermarket operators, hotel managers, and government organizations. These organizations represent more than 6,790 buildings covering nearly 540 million square feet across 36 states and the District of Columbia.
            For more information, visit the EPA Energy Star Leaders webpage.


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