7950 S. Co. Rd 25A, Tipp City, OH 45371
Feb

Ohio Energy Financing Programs: How HB 264 Can Save Schools Money, and Energy

Schools exist to educate the next generation and to give them a head start in the world. Too often, though, the needs of a school butt heads with how much money is in the budget for that particular year.

Because while a school wants to do the best it can for its students, there’s no denying they have to keep the lights on and the boiler running before they can expect to teach anyone. Fortunately for Ohio schools in need of upgrades, House Bill 264 offers a way for them to save energy, and spend less money on a major necessity, without incurring any additional debt to themselves.

What These Bills Do, In Plain English

These three bills represent options public schools have to become more energy efficient, without incurring debt in the process. As Green Energy Ohio explains, these programs allow a school to borrow funds from a local source to make the initial improvements, and to then pay that amount back over a period between 10 and 30 years using the savings generated from the upgrade.

As an example, say a public school has an outdated heating and air conditioning system. It’s a major drain on energy resources, and if it installed a new system, it would save several hundred dollars a month on operating costs. However, the sleek, new system would run the school over a hundred thousand dollars. What these programs would do is lend the school the money to make the upgrade, and then the school would take the difference between what it was paying for power, and what it pays now, in order to cover the cost of the upgrade. And, once the cost of the loan is paid back, the school can now enjoy their lower bills and increased flexibility in their budget.

Or, put another way, say you were paying $20 a month for shoes because that was all you could afford. Problem is that the shoes keep falling apart after 30 days or so. Now, if you could afford a $100 pair of shoes, they would last for ten years without a need for replacement. Essentially, the schools are getting local funding so they can afford the upgrade, and then they’re using the money they saved to pay back the local coffers.

Better Schools Through Local Efforts

There’s no such thing as a school with too much funding, and when a school simply cannot afford the basic care and upgrades it needs it runs into problems. These programs and others give schools some flexibility in upgrading in meaningful ways in order to avoid cutting costs in teacher salaries, classroom materials, and other, more important areas. Even better, once these updates are managed, and the costs are paid back, schools will then have additional money they can use for upgrades that aren’t covered by these kinds of programs.

So, in a way, HB 264 can act as a kind of the first domino. A school needs to upgrade its energy efficiency to save money, and it uses the options these programs provide to get over the initial hurdle. Once the upgrade starts saving money and is paid for, the school can then use those funds to start new programs, hire more teachers, or to pay for teaching aids that would have been outside the budget before the upgrade freed up money. And every time a school makes a new upgrade using this option, it frees up more money that can be used for the betterment of the students, rather than to keep the lights on, and the temperature comfortable.

For more information on how HB 264 applies to schools in Ohio, and about how you could use similar programs to help you and your organization to become more energy efficient, simply contact us today!

Feb

What is an Energy Audit?

If you’re hoping to save money on your energy bill–one of the highest ongoing operating expenses for many schools and other facilities–an energy audit is one of the best ways to help you meet your goals. An energy audit can help change the way your entire school runs and help you implement changes that will lead to substantial savings.

What’s an energy audit?

An energy audit takes place when an auditor comes into your school. They’ll examine how you’re using energy throughout the building, from your heating and air unit to your lights, and determine what cost-saving measures you can implement to help save on your energy budget long-term.

What do auditors look for?

During an energy audit, auditors will look at every aspect of the school’s energy usage. There are several things that they’ll be sure to check out, including:

  • Your HVAC unit. Is it well-maintained and working at peak efficiency? If not, an auditor may be able to recommend tactics that will help maintain it and increase your overall savings.
  • Your lights, both inside and outside the building. Are you using the most efficient lights available? Are you taking advantage of natural lighting in classrooms, or are windows consistently blocked off and unusable? Outside the building, they’ll examine security lighting to ensure that it offers the deterrent you need while still offering energy efficiency.
  • Any cracks, crevices, and drafts around your building through which energy could potentially be lost. Schools, particularly old buildings, are often drafty. By closing off those drafts, you can substantially decrease your heating costs in winter and cooling costs in summer.
  • Your energy control methods. Have you considered installing smart thermostats throughout the school so that you aren’t pouring out heating costs while there’s no one in the building on nights, weekends, and over breaks? What about motion detector lights that shut off when no one is in a classroom or conference room?
  • Your computers, printers, copy machines, scanners, fax machines, and other office equipment. Schools are filled with equipment that can quickly become a drain on your resources. Are teachers turning off their computers at the end of the day, or are they left on with only the monitor turned off? Across the building–and particularly across your district–this can lead to substantial cost savings.

What are the benefits of an energy audit?

Conducting an energy audit in your school has a number of key benefits. First and foremost, it will show you where you have the potential to waste energy and what you can do to change it. Next, it will let you know what methods and strategies you can use to engage everyone in the building in energy-saving measures. When you can get faculty and students on board, you’ll be amazed by the progress you can see on your energy bill! In some schools, it’s possible to save thousands of dollars a year simply by implementing the suggestions made during your energy audit.

In many cases, auditors will also help you rank the potential improvements. They’ll let you know which issues are a high priority–for example, an HVAC unit that has leaks that could potentially be dangerous–and which ones can help you save money, but aren’t as immediately necessary. Energy auditors can also help you break down some of the estimated costs of implementing improvements.

Energy audits are relatively straightforward experiences that can transform the way your school uses energy and significantly reduce your energy costs. If you’re ready to bring in an auditor for your school and experience those great energy savings, contact us today to learn more about what we can offer.

Sep

Eight Oak Hills Local Schools buildings attain Energy Star ratings with assistance from Energy Optimizers, USA and Four Seasons Environmental

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Sept. 11, 2017 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Eight Oak Hills Local Schools buildings have attained the highly coveted U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Energy Star certification with the assistance of Energy Optimizers, USA.

The certifications are a tremendous achievement for the district, making more than 60 percent of its properties Energy Star rated. Energy Star certified buildings and plants perform in the top 25 percent of similar buildings nationwide. On average, these buildings use 35 percent less energy, generate 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions and are less expensive to operate than similar buildings.

“The certifications serve as a proof of concept that the investments we have made to reduce our utility demand are paying off,” said Superintendent Jeff Brandt. “This is a third-party verification that we are headed in the right direction.”

To be eligible for Energy Star certification, a building must attain a score of 75 or higher on the EPA’s energy performance scale. Most of the district’s buildings far exceeded this threshold, with J.F. Dulles Elementary School earning a rating of 99.

The other buildings to achieve Energy Star certification and their ratings were:

  • Delshire Elementary School
  • O. Harrison Elementary School
  • Bridgetown Middle School
  • Oakdale Elementary School
  • Springmyer Elementary School
  • Oak Hills High School
  • Delhi Middle School.

Energy Optimizers, USA, partnered with Monroe-based Four Seasons Environmental, Inc., to verify the buildings’ energy performance.

The certifications come a little more than a year after the district completed an energy management project with Energy Optimizers, USA. The $4 million project improved the control and reliability of the district’s HVAC and lighting systems while significantly reducing operational costs.

“With these certifications, Oak Hills Local Schools is joining an elite group of property owners that are truly the best of the best in terms of promoting cost-effective and responsible energy use in their facilities,” said Energy Optimizers, USA President Greg Smith. “This is a district that is clearly committed to making the best use of both natural and financial resources in terms of building operations. That is something the entire community can get behind.”

As part of the energy management project, Energy Optimizers, USA, also provided funding to launch a district-wide Green Team. The Green Team involves students, staff and the community in developing, promoting and implementing energy savings and sustainability programs throughout their school districts. The team was instrumental in installing zero-waste tables in all the district’s cafeterias. Members of the team have also attended the Ohio Energy Project Leadership Summit and participated in the AEGIS Energy Bike program.

About Energy Optimizers, USA:
Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs. The company was named to the INC. Magazine Top 500 list of fastest growing companies in the U.S. (2014), was named the Fastest Growing Company in the region for two consecutive years by the Dayton Business Journal (2013, 2014), and was named a finalist in the Dayton Business Journal Best Places To Work competition in 2016.

Nov

Partnership with Energy Optimizers, USA, expected to net more than $30,000 in utility savings for Fort Recovery Local Schools

Energy Optimizers, USA, will provide funding to launch the Energy Education and Awareness Program

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Nov. 20, 2017 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Fort Recovery Local Schools expects to save more than $30,000 a year by partnering with Energy Optimizers, USA, to make energy efficiency improvements to its buildings. The district will retrofit all interior lighting with LED systems, replace its boilers and boiler controls with state-of-the-art energy efficient equipment, and make energy-saving enhancements to its kitchens and transportation garage. The energy savings attained will be equivalent to preserving 81 acres of trees or removing 53 cars from the road.

“Our mission calls for us to create a culture of collective responsibility, and this project lives up to that expectation,” said Superintendent Justin Firks. “We are acting on the trust our community has placed in us to invest taxpayer dollars wisely, while at the same time doing our part to conserve energy resources for future generations.”

The LED lighting will offer a substantial payback to the district in terms of both operating and maintenance costs. LED lighting uses an average of 60 percent less energy than the systems being replaced. LEDs can last up to 20 years, which translates into a measurable reduction in maintenance and equipment costs.

LED lighting also offers a quality of light that is very close to natural sunlight, which creates a more comfortable environment for reading. And because it does not have the hum and flicker associated with fluorescent lighting, it is an ideal lighting system for special needs classrooms.

The majority of the work will be funded through the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission’s House Bill 264 program, enabling the district to make these cost-cutting improvements at no expense to taxpayers while ensuring the guaranteed savings of the project are met or exceeded.

“This project is a win-win for the district, the community, but most of all, for the students,” said Greg Smith, president of Energy Optimizers, USA. “The district will be able to divert funding from its utility bills to student programs. Students will benefit from improved lighting in their classrooms. And, through our Energy Education and Awareness Program, teachers will have a model with which to educate students about up-and-coming careers in the STEM field.”

Energy Optimizers, USA, will provide funding to launch the Energy Education and Awareness Program. The program involves students, staff and the community in developing, promoting and implementing numerous energy savings and sustainability programs throughout the district — such as recycling, creating a district-wide energy management program and integrating educational materials into the classrooms that will assist the teachers in educating the students on energy and the environment — while being aligned with state testing standards.

About Energy Optimizers, USA:
Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs. The company was named to the INC. Magazine Top 500 list of fastest growing companies in the U.S. (2014), was named the Fastest Growing Company in the region for two consecutive years by the Dayton Business Journal (2013, 2014), and was named a finalist in the Dayton Business Journal Best Places To Work competition in 2016.

Nov

Partnership with Energy Optimizers, USA, is expected to save the NCR Country Club more than $36,000 annually

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Nov. 27, 2017 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — NCR Country Club has retained Energy Optimizers, USA for an energy improvement project that is expected to save more than $36,000 a year in utility bills. Energy Optimizers will replace all of the clubhouse’s interior and exterior lighting with high-efficiency LED lighting systems. The project also includes energy-saving upgrades to the kitchen’s exhaust systems and temperature controls.

The move to LED will offer both immediate and long-term benefits to the country club’s bottom line. LED lighting uses an average of 60 percent less energy than the systems being replaced. LEDs can also last up to 20 years, which translates into a measurable reduction in maintenance and equipment costs. And because LED lighting puts out less heat, the country club can expect to lower its cooling bills in the summer months.

The project follows a no-cost audit that Energy Optimizers, USA, completed earlier this year as part of a collaborative partnership with the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce. The comprehensive audit included a 24-month utility bill analysis, energy and facility benchmarking, and facility walk-throughs and onsite data collection.

“The energy audit gave us both meaningful data and cost-effective strategies for conserving energy and reducing our energy-related costs,” said Jeff Grant, Chief Operating Officer. “The LED upgrades, in particular, are going to be a tremendous benefit to our club and our membership and are in line with our on-going strategic vision of being friendly to the environment.”

The present NCR Country Club was established in 1954 and is world-renowned for it’s two unique and challenging courses. The 40,000-square foot clubhouse includes dining and conference facilities, as well as a fitness center. Diverse organizations from across the region regularly host events within the building.

“The NCR clubhouse is an iconic symbol of the Dayton area, and we are so pleased to be partnering with the Chamber of Commerce and the country club on this project,” said Greg Smith, president of Energy Optimizers, USA. “The new lighting will dramatically enhance both indoor and outdoor spaces, all while delivering substantial savings for the club.”

About Energy Optimizers, USA:
Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs. The company was named to the INC. Magazine Top 500 list of fastest growing companies in the U.S. (2014), was named the Fastest Growing Company in the region for two consecutive years by the Dayton Business Journal (2013, 2014), and was named a finalist in the Dayton Business Journal Best Places To Work competition in 2016.

Dec

Beavercreek High School earns milestone award in Energy Optimizers, USA-sponsored Healthy Schools Challenge

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Dec. 7, 2017 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Beavercreek High School earned the first milestone award in the Healthy Schools Challenge, a component of the Bring Your Green Challenge 2.0 that is sponsored in part by Energy Optimizers, USA.

Developed and organized by Dayton Regional Green (DRG3), the Bring Your Green Challenge is a year-long competition that encourages participants to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote sustainability. More than 207 locations, including businesses, school districts, nonprofits and other organizations, are participating this year.

Participants earn points by tracking their monthly energy, waste and water bills using online tools provided by DRG3. They can qualify for three quarterly milestone awards as they compete for the grand prize.

The first milestone focused on energy. Beavercreek High School students organized several events to promote energy conservation, including two student clean-air challenges and energy-focused employee challenges. Their efforts racked up 1,405 points, earning them the top spot for this segment of the competition.

Milestone winners were announced at a DRG Sustainability Luncheon on Nov. 15.

“We are proud to sponsor the Healthy Schools Challenge and so pleased to see teachers, students and support staff across the Miami Valley learning about and promoting sustainable practices,” said Greg Smith, president of Energy Optimizers, USA. “Education is a key component to what we do—helping our clients save money while saving the environment. Every organization that takes part in this challenge will benefit from it.”

The next milestone will focus on waste reduction, with the award ceremony scheduled for Feb. 21, 2018.

About Energy Optimizers, USA:
Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs.

Jan

Tipp City Public Library expects to cut utility expenses by $5,700 through partnership with local firm Energy Optimizers, USA

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Jan. 4, 2018 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — The Tipp City Public Library is partnering with local energy management firm Energy Optimizers, USA, to upgrade its lighting systems to LED, a move that is expected to generate an annual savings of $5,700.

The savings will be gained through both improved energy efficiency and lower maintenance costs. LED lighting uses an average of 60 percent less energy and lasts five times longer than the systems being replaced. The lighting also puts out less heat, which will help keep cooling bills in check during the summer months.

“We are pleased to work with a local company to enhance our lighting, reduce our environmental footprint and make better use of taxpayer dollars,” said Lisa E. Santucci, Director, with Tipp City Public Library. “This is going to be a noticeable improvement that will transform how patrons interact with their library.”

While the project will boost the library’s bottom line, it also directly benefits library patrons. LED lighting offers a quality of light that is very close to natural sunlight, which creates a more comfortable environment for reading.

Energy Optimizers, USA, President Greg Smith said he is proud to be partnering with a cornerstone of the community that his company calls home. “This is a win-win project that truly benefits the entire community,” he noted. “Not only will the new lighting create more inviting spaces, but the dollars saved can be invested in resources that benefit Tipp City residents.”

The project includes a 10-year material warranty.

About Energy Optimizers, USA:

Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs. The company was named to the INC. Magazine Top 500 list of fastest growing companies in the U.S. (2014), was named the Fastest Growing Company in the region for two consecutive years by the Dayton Business Journal (2013, 2014), and was named a finalist in the Dayton Business Journal Best Places To Work competition in 2016.

Jan

Partnership with Energy Optimizers, USA, saves Shawnee Local Schools more than $394,000 in utility costs over three years

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Jan. 5, 2018 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — When Shawnee Local Schools partnered with Energy Optimizers, USA, on an extensive energy management project in 2013, the district expected to save about $117,500 annually.

The numbers are in, and they show the district has outperformed expectations by more than $40,000 over a three-year period.

From June 2014 through May 2017, the district reduced its energy costs by more than $394,000. Electric consumption is down by 12.9 percent, and gas consumption is down by 12.7 percent. The savings are normalized, or adjusted to account for outliers in weather conditions and costs.

“With this project, the Shawnee Local Schools administration set out with a very clear goal of improving lighting and air quality while saving taxpayer dollars,” said James Spyker, Shawnee Local Schools Facility Manager. “By investing in relatively simple and proven energy conservation measures, we have cut our utility bills by a staggering amount. This is great news for our district and our taxpayers, but most of all, for our students. The dollars we are saving have a direct impact on our classrooms.”

The project, completed in May 2014, included energy-efficient upgrades to the district’s interior and exterior lighting systems and computer systems; the installation of occupancy sensors and smart kitchen controls; and retrofits to the district’s boilers and chillers.

The majority of the project was funded through the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission’s House Bill 264 program, enabling the district to make cost-cutting improvements at no expense to taxpayers while ensuring the guaranteed savings of the project were met or exceeded.

The amount of energy saved by the project is equivalent to removing more than 144 cars from the road or preserving more than 219 acres of trees, according to Greg Smith, president of Energy Optimizers, USA.

“By championing a smarter way to manage their energy use, Shawnee Local Schools’ administration and Board of Education have demonstrated that they are focused on the health of their finances and their community,” said Smith. “The district has saved a tremendous amount on its utility bills and is actively conserving natural resources, and those savings will continue to accumulate. That’s a win-win for the present and the future.”

About Energy Optimizers, USA:

Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs. The company was named to the INC. Magazine Top 500 list of fastest growing companies in the U.S. (2014), was named the Fastest Growing Company in the region for two consecutive years by the Dayton Business Journal (2013, 2014), and was named a finalist in the Dayton Business Journal Best Places To Work competition in 2016.

Feb

Partnership with Energy Optimizers, USA, saves New Richmond Schools nearly $705,000 in energy costs over a three-year period

TIPP CITY, Ohio, Feb. 1, 2018 (SEND2PRESS NEWSWIRE) — Three years after engaging Energy Optimizers, USA, to improve energy efficiency in its buildings, New Richmond Exempted Village Schools has shaved nearly $705,000 from its utility bills.

In 2013, Energy Optimizers, USA, began making energy efficient improvements to the district’s lighting, HVAC, and controls systems. The project included replacement of all lighting with a more energy-efficient system, upgrades to the building automation systems, a more energy efficient steam boiler plant for the high school and upgrades to the pool.

When the work completed in January 2015, the district expected to save just over $331,000 within a three-year period. But the upgrades have yielded savings that are more than two times higher than projections. The district’s electric consumption reduced by 33 percent, and gas consumption was cut by 34 percent. These savings calculations were normalized for weather.

“We partnered with Energy Optimizers, USA, to help us make strategic and cost-effective improvements to our energy efficiency, and it is clear that those investments are paying off,” said Superintendent Adam Bird.

“The upgrades, combined with greater awareness about energy conservation amongst our staff and students, are delivering tremendous dividends for our classrooms and our taxpayers.”

The majority of the work was funded through the Ohio Facilities Construction Commission’s House Bill 264 program, enabling the district to make these cost-cutting improvements at no expense to taxpayers while ensuring the guaranteed savings of the project are met or exceeded.

Also, the project enabled the district to attain the coveted U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Energy Star certification for Locust Corner Elementary and New Richmond Elementary.

The certification places both schools in the top 25 percent of similar facilities nationwide for meeting strict energy efficiency performance levels. Buildings that earn the EPA’s Energy Star rating use 35 percent less energy and generate 35 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions than similar buildings.

“Several years ago, New Richmond Exempted Village Schools’ leadership team determined it was time to gain greater control over its utility costs by investing in proven solutions,” said Greg Smith, Energy Optimizers, USA, president. “That insight has resulted in significant savings that will continue to add up over time while providing students with a greater awareness of STEM-related careers through the district’s green teams.”

The green teams are part of the district’s Energy Education & Awareness Program, which Energy Optimizers, USA, funds for most of its partner districts. The program offers resources to develop and implement sustainability programs, scholarships, an educational trip to The Ohio State University to build a district “Energy Bike” and numerous after-school activities to educate the students, staff, and community about energy efficiency and sustainability.

About Energy Optimizers, USA:

Energy Optimizers, USA works with educational, governmental, commercial and industrial customers to implement energy savings opportunities to reduce operational costs, including lighting retrofits, renewable energy projects (wind and solar), HVAC retrofit projects, building automation retrofits and energy education programs. The company was named to the INC. Magazine Top 500 list of fastest growing companies in the U.S. (2014), was named the Fastest Growing Company in the region for two consecutive years by the Dayton Business Journal (2013, 2014), and was named a finalist in the Dayton Business Journal Best Places To Work competition in 2016.

Nov

Kids learn about energy efficiency at North Middle School

By Sam Shriver of Lima News – sshriver@limanews.com

LIMA — Energy exists all around us. It exists in many forms and can be generated in many different ways.

On Friday, students at Lima North Middle School learned how to create electricity through a generator on a bicycle.

“We had the privilege of providing an energy bike for Lima City Schools. This past June four middle school girls from Lima participated in a workshop with the Ohio Energy Project. They learned the nuts and bolts of w the ring. They started with stripping wire and reading wiring schematics. They wired the entire control board. They learned about energy efficiency and they came back to Lima schools to share that information,” said Nancy Glasgow, energy education manager for Energy Optimizers USA.

Read more…

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