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Kenton County Schools Recognized for Energy Achievements

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recognized the Kenton County School District with a 2015 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award for continued leadership in protecting the environment through superior energy efficiency achievements. 

KCSD’s accomplishments will be recognized in Washington, D.C. on April 20.

The school district has been an ENERGY STAR partner since 2006 and will be honored for its long-term commitment to energy efficiency.

KCSD educates more than 14,000 students across 1.7 million square feet of space. 

The district continues to make great strides in energy efficiency through committing to ongoing energy management, investing in energy efficient new construction, involving students in energy efficiency initiatives, and adopting new technology. Other school districts from across Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, and North Carolina have modeled their energy programs after KCSD’s successful energy management approach, and many have adopted its E=WISE2 student program. KCSD is receiving ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year—Sustained Excellence recognition for its significant commitment to building and operating energy efficient schools and for using ENERGY STAR tools and resources as a central component of its energy program.

Key 2014 accomplishments include:

  • Building a near net zero school, which costs less to build than the national median at $200 per square foot.
  • Realizing more than $1.4 million in avoided energy costs this year, and more than 6.8 million since 2005 by incorporating ENERGY STAR best practices into the district’s behavioral management program.
  • Promoting its participation with the ENERGY STAR program on the district’s website, in presentations, at luncheons, and in published materials.
  • Providing weekly performance reports and posting ENERGY STAR scores on the website and energy billboards in the schools. KCSD also provides monthly energy reports to the Board of Education.
  • Earning ENERGY STAR certification for one more school, bringing the total number of ENERGY STAR certified schools to 12 out of 17 schools in the district.
  • Assisting corporations in developing sustainability plans through the district’s internship program. Alex Marquardt, a senior in Kenton County’s Sustainable Energy Technology Engineering Academy, is working with JCPenney and New Energy Technology and using the skills he gained through KCSD’s energy education programs to assist the company in achieving its energy goals through a lighting and HVAC audit project.

“The Kenton County School District truly values our partnership with ENERGY STAR,” said Terri Cox-Cruey, superintendent. ”It’s exciting to see the impact we’ve made and we remain committed to continuing our work to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect the environment.”

Since its inception in 1992, ENERGY STAR and its partners have helped prevent a total of more than two billion metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions, according to a news release. In 2013 alone, ENERGY STAR and its partners provided more than $11 billion in societal benefits due to reducing damages from climate change.

“Through their sustained participation with ENERGY STAR, KCSD is helping Americans save money, save energy, and do their part to reduce our nation’s greenhouse gas emissions that fuel climate change,” said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. “I applaud KCSD for earning EPA’s highest ENERGY STAR award, the 2015 Partner of the Year – Sustained Excellence Award, demonstrating a strong commitment to energy efficiency and to preserving a healthy planet for future generations.”

-Staff report

Photo: Scott High School via Facebook