Energy Conservation "Green Apple" Contest
Q: What is the "Green Apple Energy Conservation Program" aka the "Green Apple Program"?
A: This program was created with the goal of promoting public awareness and involvement in our School District's Energy Management initiative. It is designed to harness and leverage the power of our large workforce by encouraging and rewarding participation in energy conscious behavior.
Q: How does it work?
A: The cornerstone of the program is asking everyone working in School District buildings to be aware of, take ownership of, and actively help eliminate wasteful energy practices. The greatest impact is realized when our buildings are shut-down, to the greatest extent possible, when people are not in the buildings. This is especially true when schools are closed for holidays. To focus on this concept, we created an on-line shutdown certification form that participants can complete as they shut their workspace down before leaving for break. This form outlines procedures and reminds participants to check for or perform specific shutdown tasks. It records the participants information and workspace location upon completion. We accept completed forms as certification that a space has been shut down.
Q: Why is it important?
A: According to the US Department of Energy, Lighting accounts for about 14% of a public school buildings annual electricity usage. Similarly, "plug loads", or devices plugged into the wall outlets, account for approximately 10% of usage. These 2 areas combined account for roughly 24% of the total electrical usage, which is significant. It is estimated that programs like this can help reduce usage in these areas by up to 25%. To put these figures into perspective, we spent approximately $3.75 million on electricity during the 2018-2019 school year. 24% of that is $900k. If we reduced that figure by 25%, we could save our School District $225k in energy costs. Since public schools largely operate on a fixed budget, any savings we can archive can be reallocated, and better spent on achieving our core mission of educating children. In addition, reductions in energy usage will reduce our environmental energy footprint and demonstrates that we care about our environment by acting as responsible, conscientious consumers.
Q: How can I participate?
A: Great news, If you have read along this far, you already are! Are you willing to take it to the next level? If the answer is yes, just watch for our email reminders with links to our on-line shutdown form. We will typically send out reminders before an upcoming break. All you have to do is remember to complete a shutdown certification before you leave. You can access the form anytime on our District website. There is even a field in the form where you can submit feedback. Every year we compile the results and award prizes to participants. In past years, the prizes have been tumbler mugs with our energy program logo imprinted on them. Because we have many participants and a limited number of prizes, we utilize a lottery system to award them. Every shutdown certification submitted earns a lottery number in a drawing for your school. We try to award 5 participants at each school. Historically, we have also been able to award ALL participants with a perfect score. A perfect score means you have submitted at least 1 shutdown certification form for each of the 4 seasonal (Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer) breaks. We then announce the winners the following school year and hand out the prizes at our Back to School Rally.
The shudown form is located on the Rock Hill Schools website under Departments>Energy & Sustainability>Shutdown Checklist.
Thank you for your support and Good Luck!