By Madison Hinshaw, Communications Editorial Intern in Spring 2012.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recognized more than 200 organizations, school systems, health care systems and retailers as 2011’s Energy Star Leaders. Several organizations in Appalachia have been recognized for being Energy Star Leaders, North Carolina taking the lead with a whopping six energy efficient organizations.
The EPA’s Energy Star program aims to help organizations nationwide achieve energy efficiency by providing them with an energy management strategy. The strategy includes a focus on ongoing performance measurement and whole-building improvement.
Energy Star Leaders have improved the energy efficiency of their buildings by 20 percent or more. In order to become an Energy Star Leader, an organization must meet one of two energy efficient milestones.
The first milestone requires a 10 percent improvement in energy performance across their entire building portfolio. The second milestone, the “top performer,” requires that buildings in the organization’s portfolio perform in the top 25 percent when compared to similar buildings nationwide. The eligible organizations must track their energy performance data and submit it to the EPA to be considered as an Energy Star Leader.
Organizations in North Carolina that reached one or both of the milestones include:
Burke County Public Schools
Food Lion, LLC in Salisbury
Nash-Rocky Mount Schools
Wayne County Public Schools
Yadkin County Schools
Other organizations recognized in Appalachia include:
Screven County Board of Education, Ga.
Fulton County Schools, Ga.
Loudoun County Public Schools, Va.
Albemarle County Public Schools, Va.
Kenton County School District, Ky.
These Energy Star Leaders, along with others in the U.S., have cumulatively saved more than $150 million on utility bills and prevented greenhouse gas emissions equal to the electricity used by nearly 95,000 homes.
With the help of the EPA, these organizations are improving their energy efficiency and saving millions of dollars one step at a time!
See the complete list of the EPA’s Energy Star Leaders at https://www.energystar.gov/ia/business/leaders/Leaders_full_list_2011.pdf?2758-99c7.