Why we should be energy efficient?
By being energy efficient we reduce our energy consumption, leading to less burning of fossil fuels. The burning of fossil fuels releases green house gases which contribute to Climate Change. Their burning also leads to the production of pollutants causing acid rain and soot. If we become more energy efficient we can reduce climate change impacts, acid rain production, and soot production. Hennepin County is committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050.
Video: Changing Behavior - A video about how to reduce energy usuage in the district
Being efficient with energy is good for the environment and you, plus efficiency saves money! Energy costs for heating, cooling and lighting are very expensive. In most schools, energy costs more than books and supplies. MPS spends approximately 12.5 million dollars per year on energy costs.
Reducing energy use is a good way to save money. It is possible to save money on energy without experiencing too much hardship because experts estimate up to 25% of energy used in schools is wasted by inefficient practices, like leaving lights and appliances on when not in use.
What steps is MPS taking to be energy efficient?
MPS has upgraded more than 141 boilers. We have started a preventive maintenance program to improve heating and cooling efficiency. We have retrofit systems using more energy efficient technology while aggressively pursuing rebates to offset the costs of the upgrades. MPS is working to improve monitoring systems to find ways to reduce energy consumption even more. We are also improving bus efficiency by retrofitting 40% of MPS-owned diesel buses with special recirculation valves to significantly reduce emissions. We have also begun reduced air-conditioning use in schools where only staff members are present during the summer. This policy alone has saved MPS thousands of dollars.
What steps can you take to be energy efficient?
Lighting accounts for 50% of energy costs, so:
Powering the monitor accounts for 50% of the energy a computer uses, so:
Turn off printers, copiers and other office equipment at the end of every day. Turn off and unplug electronics and personal appliances.
Use MPS Green Reports to find out every building’s carbon footprint. With this information, you can find out each building’s energy consumption to help inform where energy savings can be made.
Water conservation is a part of energy savings and efficiency. Save water by not letting water run when washing your hands. Turn the water on to wet hands, and then turn it off while soaping. Report leaks to maintenance staff immediately. Maximize natural cover in outdoor landscaping.
More Energy Information:
What is Energy?
Energy is the ability to do work. Energy heats homes, runs refrigerators, moves cars, lights streets, and allows you to run. There are different forms of energy. Renewable energy is energy that can be made quickly, like wind energy. Non-renewable energy is energy that takes millions of years to be made.
Where does energy used at MPS come from?
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Energy Efficiency Presentation
Meeting MN Academic Standards in Science through teaching on Energy Efficiency k-5
MN Academic Standards 6-12
Energy Curriculum Ideas (K-12)
Environmental Education Resources