Ways and means of making school energy savings.
In a typical school, lighting and air conditioning are the largest consumers of electricity, but of course plug-in equipment such as computers, specialised equipment such as lab apparatus and canteen equipment such as cookers and chilled food storage all contribute and in a large school their contribution is significant.
Schools very often run on tight budgets and are also expected to be at the forefront of environmental thinking in regard to global warming, the climate crisis and carbon emissions as part of their responsibility of educating the citizens of the future.
It’s no wonder that the board, trustees and the managers of schools around the world are constantly seeking to lower carbon emissions and increase school energy savings.
Schools often have examples of renewable energy such as wind turbines or solar panels to offset some of their energy costs but also to showcase this important technology to pupils and students.
Sustainable technology such as this is useful, but decreasing energy consumption and eliminating energy waste is an on-going process and savings are often incremental rather than the result of a single process or strategy.
How schools can increase their energy efficiency and lower their carbon emissions.
The actual energy consumption patterns for any school will obviously be dependant on which of the world’s regions the school is situated in and therefore the prevailing climatic conditions that it experiences.
Having said that, statistically speaking, lighting will account for roughly 30% of energy consumption and HVAC account for a further 30%. The remaining electrical energy use will be spread over a wide range of areas as noted above.
LED’s are obtainable to fit almost all interior and exterior light fittings and will show savings of as much as 80% over legacy filament lighting and significant energy savings over all other forms of lighting including CFL’s.
LED units have a much longer working life than other forms of lighting and therefore also save money in replacement and maintenance costs.
Even LED’s will be ‘wasting energy’ if they are used to illuminate areas that are unoccupied or are being lit adequately by natural daylight.
Lighting control systems can be installed that will sense occupancy or natural light levels and dim or extinguish lights accordingly.
Where individual AC units are installed such as gyms and classrooms, retrofitted sensors will show up to a 30% increase in efficiency and take only 15 minutes to fit per unit.
The biggest potential savings however come from measuring and monitoring the energy consumption across the whole school and analysing this data building by building, department by department and circuit by circuit.
Analysing this data will certainly highlight areas of energy waste as well as showing how and when the energy is used across the school.
The data can be used to reschedule activities and usage in order to reduce peak demand charges, which could be having a significant impact on energy costs.
In schools where this information has been collected and collated and shared with students it has been seen to motivate large reductions in energy use and therefore carbon emissions.
These savings have been brought about by the pupils’ environmental concerns as much as the fiscal needs of the school.
SureSense resources for university energy efficiency:
Eniscope is a hardware and software package that meters your energy consumption from a wide number of points and enables you to analyse that data in real time. Information can be collected from different areas, different circuits and all the way down to individual pieces of equipment.
Eniscope Analytics is a web-based, diagnostic tool that allows you to study your energy information in an intelligent way making it simpler to understand and therefore act upon.
Eniscope Public Displays make energy consumption and energy savings visible to staff, managers and students alike in order to inform and motivate as well as making a commitment to lower carbon emissions visible.
SureSense Eluma is a lighting control system that will turn lights off in unused or unoccupied areas.
SureSense LED’s used in a variety of applications can cut energy costs and also reduce maintenance costs compared to incandescent, CFL, neon, and other options.
For more information or to locate your nearest SureSense distributor please simply contact us.