From a press release entitled
"Energy-efficient school generating more power than it uses"
An energy-efficient village school is now generating more power than it uses thanks to solar panels on its roof. Caddington Village School is one of seven schools taking part in Central Bedfordshire Council’s Invest to Save Solar Scheme.
Since the two different 30kW solar installations were installed across two blocks at the school in Five Oaks, Caddington, during the last financial year the results have been dramatic.
Last month’s records showed that the school’s energy consumption was almost half of what it was in April 2015. What is more, the solar panels generated more power than the school used during this period.
Nicki Butler, the school’s Business Manager, said: “This is an impressive achievement and one that will become more apparent as time goes on. We will aim to keep up the good work and impressing on pupils just how things like switching off lights translates into savings which means we spend less on services and more on teaching and learning.”
Other measures taken to reduce energy consumption include: ensuring the boilers are on much stricter timing controls; installing energy-efficient lighting as well as movement sensors to the lights and thermostatic controls for radiators; pupils have created an eco-council, pledging to take responsibility to turn off unused equipment and also made their own ‘hippos’, special devices to reduce the amount of water needed to flush toilets.
Councillor Steven Dixon, Executive Member for Education and Skills, said: “As well as producing impressive results like we have seen at Caddington Village School, this scheme really is win-win for schools. “Central Beds paid for the solar panels and their installation up front, with the schools already taking part using the savings on their energy bills to repay the scheme interest free. These repayments are then used to allow other schools to take part in the scheme.”
In total, the nine solar installations at eight schools have the capacity to generate 200kW of power. They are among 23 installations at 22 council sites, including Priory House, which are currently producing around 500kW of power and which were installed as part of a wider solar programme.
Pete Hughes, the council’s Schools Energy Officer, added: “Solar power has a dual benefit of reducing energy bills and producing an income through the government’s Feed-In Tariff incentive scheme whereby sites are paid for each unit of energy produced. Solar works best on buildings occupied during daylight hours when the power produced can be used onsite. This means that council buildings and schools are ideal for solar which is why we have made a strong commitment to delivering the solar programme. The impact of the school solar schemes has been immediate with all sites noticing a decrease in their energy consumption and energy bills. Students are encouraged to be energy aware to ensure that the power produced by the panels is not wasted by doing things such as switching off equipment when not in the classrooms. The solar schemes also provide an income to the schools through the Feed-In Tariff scheme; this income can be used by the schools to invest in learning and development resources for the pupils.”
For more information about the scheme email firstname.lastname@example.org