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Going to School to Save Energy

Steve Stackhouse-Kaelble (Dec/Jan 10)
Not that anyone ever wants to waste money, but these days it's imperative to get the most value for every dollar spent. At it happens, just about every business and home can do a better job of being energy efficient, and doing so can save money and help the planet at the same time. Public power utilities are eager to help.

To some it may seem counterintuitive for a utility to go out of its way to help customers use less of its product, but such actions can reduce the need to build costly power plants - saving everyone money. Take the efforts of Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) as an example. An NPPD energy efficiency consultant worked with the Scottsbluff Public Schools to help the Roosevelt Elementary School find ways to save energy. The consultant recommended significant changes to the school's lighting systems, including installation of efficient T8 fixtures. The lights use about 40 percent less energy and save on lamp maintenance as well. The consultant also called for replacement of "Exit" signs with new LED technology. The end result is savings of some $6,500 a year at the small school - enough to buy a lot of supplies and books.


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