K-12 Schools Sustainability Strategy Collaborative Update
With the approval this past month of Holly Drive Leadership Academy’s $92,500 Energy Expenditure Plan and San Marcos USD’s $4.1 million multi-year Energy Expenditure Plan, our San Diego K-12 Schools Sustainability Strategy Collaborative continues to lead the state with 26 Energy Expenditure Plans approved for a total of $20.8 million. When fully implemented these projects will reduce energy usage by 9.7 million kWh annually, reduce demand by 2.8 MW, and save $2 million annually in utility costs while creating 117 job-years of project work.
As a number of the school districts across San Diego County already have Solar PV installed, or are considering the integration of Solar PV in the future, we invited expert guest speakers to our February monthly meeting to educate the collaborative members on the complimentary benefits of integrating energy storage into their overall energy management strategies. We learned that in addition to energy storage’s ability to provide low cost energy from batteries at times when the sun is not shining, energy storage can also offer significant reduction in overall utility bill costs by greatly reducing demand peaks, which are the key factor in calculating a school’s demand charge component of their bill. As there are provisions in the new Proposition 39 Guideline 2015 Amendment that allow Proposition 39 funds to be used for energy storage and peak demand shaving, this is now a very viable power conservation measure for school districts to consider for inclusion in their Energy Expenditure Plans.
Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) may submit Energy Expenditure Plan applications under the 2015 guideline rules using the new streamlined, online application process. Each LEA will receive a “Welcome to Energy Expenditure Plan Online” e-mail that includes the web address link to the Energy Expenditure Plan online system. In addition, the revised Energy Expenditure Plan Handbook and Energy Savings Calculator tool (Version 6) are available on the Energy Commission’s Proposition 39 webpage. Only the revised Version 6 of the Energy Savings Calculator tool can be used in combination with the EEP online application. LEAs are no longer allowed to submit Energy Expenditure Plan applications using the old Expenditure Plan General Form (Form A) and Expenditure Plan Project Summary Form (Form B) Excel spreadsheets. We are awaiting final confirmation of the date that the California Energy Commission will conduct a comprehensive training session on the new Proposition 39 online system and tools for our K-12 Schools Sustainability Strategy Collaborative members here in San Diego.