ESCALON, Calif. — Escalon Unified School District kicked off spring with a “flip-the-switch” celebration in honor of the completion of a 1.2 MW of solar photovoltaic (PV) and integrated energy efficiency and science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education initiative. On March 27, Escalon Unified leadership and Oakland, California-based energy partner Engie Services U.S. commemorated the completion of construction and implementation of the districtwide energy program. Through the collaborative partnership with Engie Services, Escalon’s energy upgrade represents a new approach to enhancing the learning environment, both inside and outside of the classroom.

The program is expected to generate $15.3 million in energy savings.

In the summer of 2017, Engie performed an energy assessment of the district’s six campuses to identify opportunities to reduce energy consumption and costs and improve facility performance. With input from Escalon Unified facilities leaders and on-site stakeholders, the Engie team determined that focusing on solar PV installations, exterior lighting upgrades, a pool pump replacement, and HVAC upgrades would net Escalon Unified the greatest savings on its electricity bill.

During the celebration event, Superintendent Ron Costa recognized the impact of all six campuses now being powered by clean energy, with each school having installed solar units, half of which are ground-mounted. Together, all six solar arrays bring the District’s total energy capacity to produce 2 million kWh in the first year of program — the equivalent of enough clean energy to power over 160 local homes in Escalon for one year.

Publication date: 4/23/2018

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