Local Newspaper Cites, “White Mountain School Top Conserver of Energy”

Khela McGann
Check-out this article from The Littleton Courier
By Khela McGann, Courier Reporter

pg A8 The Littleton Courier   Wednesday, February 29, 2012  


BETHLEHEM — White Mountain School recently placed top in its Green Cup Challenge category, reducing its energy consumption over four weeks by 15.8 percent. Second place among northeast boarding schools went to Massachusetts’s Stoneleigh- Burnham School with a 13.6 percent reduction, while third place went to Phillips Academy, also in Massachusetts, with a 10.9 percent drop.
The annual challenge for kindergarten through grade 12 encourages competition in conservation of electricity and reduction in each school’s carbon footprint. This year, 116 schools in 22 states prevented a total of 1,567,562 pounds of carbon dioxide from being released into the atmosphere from Jan. 18 to Feb. 15.
Students and staff at White Mountain School did things like turning off lights in unoccupied rooms and shutting down computers that weren’t being used. They also raised environmental awareness through posters and held two candlelight dinners to serve as a reminder of the challenge. Students elsewhere used more natural light in classrooms, replaced old equipment with energy efficient models and set thermostats a few degrees lower than normal.
Elizabeth Aldrich, chair of the Sustainability Studies Department, said the school has also done several things to reduce electricity usage long-term, including installing a wood pellet system and addressing a malfunctioning pump.
The challenge, now in its fifth year, is sponsored by the nonprofit Green School Alliance.  “Together, we saved 1,031,148 kilowatt hours of electricity — over one million for the fourth year in a row,” said Katy Perry, the Green Cup Challenge’s program director, in a press release. “That’s the equivalent of annual CO2 emissions from 139 passenger vehicles. If this level of savings were extended for a full academic year, it would translate to the prevented emissions of about 1,400 cars.”  The Green Schools Alliance pointed out that with 132,600 schools in the United States, the challenge demonstrates that potential benefits of a long-term conservation of energy would be “enormous.”

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