Schools that teach energy efficiency empower students to lead big changes in how their schools use energy.
Energy Use in School Buildings
School buildings are the third biggest energy user of all commercial building types, accounting for 10% of the energy used by non-residential buildings. All that energy translates into big bills: Each year, K-12 schools spend $8 billion and universities spend $6 billion on energy – more than they spend on computers and textbooks combined. Unfortunately, Energy Star estimates that approximately 30% of the energy in school buildings is used inefficiently or unnecessarily. That’s where energy efficiency education steps in.
Benefits of Energy-Efficient Students & Schools
When students know about energy efficiency, they can make big changes at their schools, and because there are so many school buildings across the United States, making those buildings energy efficient goes a long way toward helping the country save energy. When schools become more efficient they provide a better learning environment, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and help students understand how to be responsible energy consumers. The Alliance's Energy 2030 Plan calls this increased energy productivity; instead of wasting energy, students learn how to be more productive with the energy they use.
How the Alliance Helps Students & Schools Save Energy
The Alliance's K-12 and higher education programs empower students to change the culture of their academic environment to one that embraces energy efficiency. Students lead no-cost behavior changes, building retrofits, events on green careers, and other initiatives that save energy within and beyond their school building. They also contribute to integrated demand side management where applicable. When students are literate in energy efficiency, they become the next generation energy efficiency leaders – not only in their schools, but also in their homes and communities.