Bullitt County Public Schools has been nationally recognized for reducing their energy intensity by 21% over two million square feet.
U.S. Secretary of Energy Rick Perry recognized over 20 Better Buildings, Better Plants Challenge Goal Achievers at the July Better Buildings Summit in Washington, DC.
Assistant Superintendent for Support Services Becky Sexton and District Energy Manager Kimberly Joseph officially accepted the award from Daniel Simmons, Assistant Secretary, US Dept. of Energy, who oversees the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
BCPS was the only Kentucky representative recognized in the area of energy savings which included companies such as General Mills of Minnesota, Kohl’s Department Stores of Wisconsin, Havertys of Georgia, Las Vegas Sands Corporation of Nevada and Bentley Mills of California.
Joseph said the district has partnered with the Better Buildings program since 2016.
“Working with their team, we set a 10 year energy reduction goal of 20%,” she said. “We are so proud to have achieved that goal in just over three years, and to be recognized on such a national platform by the US. Dept. of Energy.”
Joseph works closely with contractors on new facility construction and renovation ensuring energy saving features are installed.
“Energy savings and reductions like what BCPS has achieved can only occur when organizations have robust energy programs that include: investment in energy efficiency technologies, good maintenance practices, and students and staff following energy conscious behaviors,” Joseph affirmed.
Since 2006, the district has realized over $7 million in savings that has been reinvested in classrooms from providing teaching staff to technology and supplies students need.
Following the recent renovation of Mt. Washington Elementary School, 32% in energy savings was achieved through energy efficiency improvements, which translates to roughly $28,000/year in energy savings.
Joseph said energy saving principles will be applied to the next scheduled construction project, a brand new elementary school.
“We will continue to employ energy efficient design features like geothermal HVAC systems, wireless building automation, and LED lighting,” she said. “We hope to work with the selected design team to have a sustainable, net-zero or a net-zero ready building. BCPS wants to be the best stewards of tax-payer dollars, building healthy learning spaces that are cost-effective and extremely efficient.”
Jen Singer, Lead Energy and Sustainability Specialist, was quite impressed at how successful the district has been in reducing consumption despite massive growth over the last decade.
“Bullitt County has achieved energy performance improvements greater than 10% at 16 of their properties,” Singer noted.
The Goal Achievers are part of hundreds of organizations that work with the U.S. Department of Energy in the Better Buildings Initiative and are featured in the annual Better Buildings Progress Report.