Wednesday October 3rd, 2012

From the Daily Local:

The Phoenixville Area School Board was informed the school district saved more than 30 percent on energy costs since the installation of solar energy panels at the high school and administration buildings.

“What makes energy conservation exciting is we really did save some dollars last year,” Superintendent Alan Fegley said.

Stan Johnson, the district’s executive director of operations, gave a presentation at Sept. 20’s board meeting on what savings the school district received in 2011-12 over the previous academic year.

“Bottom line, the district’s energy savings over the last year,was 30.2 percent less in the ’11-12 year as compared to the ’10-11 year,” Johnson said. “It went from a bill of $952,(367) down to a bill of $665,(181).”

Johnson tempered some of the results by acknowledging that the mild winter may have contributed in driving down energy costs.

According to him, electricity costs were down 25 percent, natural gas was decreased by 34.5 percent, and fuel oil was down by almost half, at 49.8 percent.

Mostly because of the winter, the number of “degree days” was far lower this year. Degree days are measures of how much the district’s air conditioning or heating units need to work to keep the buildings at a comfortable temperature,

The Phoenixville Area School District had 5,026 degree days this year as opposed to 6,089 last year, Johnson said.

However, even if the bills were “weather-corrected” to a typical year, Johnson said the energy bills would likely still have been 18 percent less than the 2010-11 school year.

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