Schools eye energy bill cuts
PALMERSTON NORTH CITY ENVIRONMENTAL TRUST Schools in Palmerston North will start reducing their energy consumption this year in a new initiative launched by energy management firm Torque IP and the Palmerston North City Environmental Trust.
Torque IP and the trust began working together to identify the limitations on schools becoming involved in energy efficiency programmes.
‘‘The cost for schools is a large barrier,’’ says Stefan Botha of Torque IP. ‘‘We needed to source additional funds so that we could leverage available EECA (government) funding.’’
The trust approached Torque IP about 18 months ago to look at ways primary schools could be involved in an energy efficiency programme.
Initially, the trust wanted to look at infrastructure for solar panels to be installed in schools.
‘‘After some investigation, we learned that many schools don’t track where they could save money in their everyday day-to-day running,’’ says trust chairman Brent Barrett.
Torque IP has arranged to work with Ross Intermediate, Russell Street School, Parkland School, Ashhurst School, and Whakaronga School to reduce their power bills for a three-year period and beyond.
To help schools lower their energy consumption, the company has developed SEEP (School Energy Efficiency Programme).
Schools taking part are able to watch their energy savings online and take advantage of the national energy reduction competition Conservation Cup (www.conservationcup.co.nz).
Torque IP guarantees savings of 10 per cent for the schools that join SEEP.