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Antelope High School achieves Energy Star designation

Improved mechanical systems will save the district money
By: Sena Christian, The Press Tribune
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Roseville students may expend a lot of energy in the classroom, but the school district doesn’t want this to be true of its buildings. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently awarded Antelope High School in Roseville with the Energy Star designation for the school’s energy-efficiency updates. This means the campus uses 35 percent less energy than the typical school building and releases 35 percent less carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming. The designation also signifies that the building performs in the top 25 percent of similar facilities nationwide for energy efficiency. “Our whole program was formed around retro-commissioning,” said Roseville Joint Union High School District Director of Facilities Development Chris Grimes. “We go in and fine-tune our mechanical systems.” To earn the designation, the school district worked in partnership with the Sacramento Municipal Utility District to reduce Antelope High School’s energy-consumption. The district worked with Glumac, an engineering firm in Folsom that specializes in green building, to improve the school’s energy performance and make cost-effective improvements to the mechanical systems. Improving the school’s energy efficiency will help lower the district’s operating budget, by reducing energy costs. “The school is approximately 23 percent more energy efficient then the last high school built in the district, resulting in an approximate annual energy savings of $45,000,” said Project Manager Scott Davis. Out of the 10,222 public schools in the state of California, only slightly more than 300 have achieved Energy Star designation. Besides Antelope High School, the two schools with the Energy Star designation closest to this area are located in the San Juan Unified School District. Schools in the state’s coastal regions have an easier time achieving the designation because these facilities don’t require air-conditioning, Grimes said. The EPA introduced the Energy Star program in 1992 as a voluntary, market-based approach to reducing greenhouse-gas emissions through energy efficiency. Today, the Energy Star label applies to products, homes, and commercial and industrial buildings that meet, and in some cases exceed, strict energy-efficiency specifications set by the government. Last year, Americans saved nearly $17 billion on their energy bills through this program, while reducing greenhouse-gas emissions equivalent to those of 30 million vehicles. Grimes said Adelante High School will be the next school in Roseville to achieve Energy Star designation in the coming weeks. Sena Christian can be reached at senac@goldcountrymedia.com.