Officials at the Green Bay School Districts started thinking about the District's energy use in 2002. Since then, they have done a series of energy audits and made a number of energy efficiency improvements have helped the District save, an estimated, 46.5 million-kilowatt hours of energy, 5 million-therms of gas, 163 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions and $9.7 million.
These improvements — which are being done by a “green team” of local contractors that includes several members of SMART Local 18, IBEW Local 158 and UA Local 400 — allow the District to better use and monitor its energy use. Some of the projects include:
- The installation of Direct Digital Controls (DDC) systems at 37 of the District’s schools allowing the District to better regulate and monitor each building’s energy use;
- The replacement of outdoor air control dampers in order to better control the air entering and leaving the buildings;
- The use of a Peak Demand Limiting system that encourages the schools to pre-cool their buildings and limit energy use during high-demand times;
- The development of new HVAC control sequences that optimize energy savings; and
- The installation of pass-through lighting in the middle and high schools that dim the lights when the hallways are not in use.
Not only do these projects help the District to cut the size of its energy bills, they create a better learning for the students along with new educational opportunities. Several of the schools have incorporated the ideas of energy efficiency and sustainability into their curriculum — ranging from the elementary schools where students are taught about the importance of turning off the lights to the high schools where students can learn about renewable energy and energy conservation careers.
The BlueGreen Alliance recently stopped by the Green Bay School District to talk to the faculty and contractors who are working on these energy efficiency projects. From these interviews, we made a series of three interviews videos about the energy efficiency projects, how they are being incorporated into the school curriculum and the importance of having trained individuals working on the projects. These videos can be watched below or on our YouTube or Facebook pages.
Links for the individual videos are as follows:
- Greening Green Bay Public Schools (5:00): http://youtu.be/NvT2hMWOalE
- Teaching an Energy-Wise Generation (1:31): http://youtu.be/Le7ZlOviMuE
- People Behind Green Bay's Energy Savings (2:16): http://youtu.be/TZQbSi9rFhw
More information about the School District's energy efficiency improvements are available at the following:
- SlidShare.Net: Green Bay Area School District Energy Conservation Story
- District Administration: School District is Greener with Energy-Savings Building Controls
- Focus on Energy: Take Control of Demand
- Green Bay Press Gazette: Green Bay Schools Energy Efficiency Efforts Save $5.6M From 2003-09 As Officials Search For Ways to Go Green
See photos from our stop on the BlueGreen Alliance's Flickr page.
Thank you to all the individuals who took time to talk to us including:
Jeff Christens, Green Bay Public Schools, Service Steamfitter, UA Local 400 Member
Luanne O’Leary, Green Bay Public Schools, Manager of Trades & Internal Service Systems
Eric Ahlgrim, Eland Electric, Journeyman Electrician, IBEW Local 158 Member
Bob Baierl, Eland Electric, Foreman, IBEW Local 158 Member
Dan Christens, Ace Electric, Master Electrician, IBEW Local 158 Member
Miles Cornell, Tweet Garot Mechanical, Pipefitter/HVAC Technician, UA Local 400 Member
Mary Hock, Tweet Garot Mechanical, Sheet Metal Technician, SMWIA/SMART Local 18 Member
Jeff Jarolimek, AutomatedLogic, Senior Project Engineer
Katie Klarkowski, Eland Electric, Apprentice Electrician, IBEW Local 158 Member
Mark Rasmussen, Automated Logic, System Specialist
Allen Rymer, Green Bay Public Schools, Electronics Technician