In the first five months of enacting a number of new energy-efficient measures, Galt Joint Union High School District saved more than $21,000 on its electricity bills.
Last spring, the district began replacing old mechanical thermostats with programmable ones and shutting down non-essential mechanical equipment during long breaks when school is not in session, Superintendent Daisy Lee said.
The new energy-efficient measures are saving the district on average $4,000 per month, according to trustee Kathleen Amos.
“I am real pleased to see our rewards,” Lee said.
Outside lights have also been placed on timers, and district students have become “energy ambassadors,” visiting classrooms to talk about energy savings and strategies that everyone can participate in, according to Lee.
The work is part of the district’s Facilities Committee, overseen by Lee. It is also one of the ways the district’s Budget Advisory Committee is looking to cut spending.
Between February, when the district started making changes, and June, the largest usage drop was in June. That month the district used roughly $12,500 less power than the previous June, according to a cost-analysis chart prepared by the district.
Its electricity is supplied by both the Sacramento Municipal Utilities District and Pacific Gas & Electric.
Amos, who is also a member of the school board’s Facilities Committee, said she is excited about the energy plan.
“It’s very optimistic in these hard times if we can do a similar thing in saving gasoline. This has saved us a lot of money on electricity,” she said.
The next meeting of the district’s Facility Committee is at 3:30 p.m. Feb. 1 in the Liberty Ranch High School Media Center, 12595 Marengo Road, Galt. It is open to the public.
Contact reporter Jennifer Bonnett at firstname.lastname@example.org.