GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.-
School District 51 has been energized after receiving some national attention.
The Mesa County school district has been awarded for its energy efforts by the Environmental Protection Agency, and is currently among the country’s top energy savers. The district achieved an astonishing 90 out of 100 on its average energy performance portfolio.
"The district values awards like these and recognitions like these because it shows that we are saving money and that we are being good stewards, not only of taxpayer dollars by saving money, but then also of the environment,” said Christy McGee, spokesperson for School District 51.
The school district has actively engaged in energy efforts for more than 10 years now, by installing energy efficient appliances and solar panels.
School officials say they are proud of this accomplishment, especially since they are a larger district than most.
"We're right up there in an elite category of school districts," said Eric Anderson, energy manager for School District 51. "Many school districts achieved a 90 in their portfolio management database for their overall score, but for a school district of our size that's what really makes this notable.”
Officials from the district add that by reducing their utility budget, they’ll be able to divert funds back into classrooms, teacher supplies and education.
"In these kind of budget years, that's exactly what we want to be doing, and we want to be talking about that and showing the results of these efforts," said Anderson.
School officials add that even though some of their buildings may seem to look outdated, they are constantly upgrading. They plan on replacing urinals and toilets throughout the district to conserve water, and also add solar panels to four more of their schools in the near future.
For more information on the district's energy efforts, click here.