Greener Southern schools ahead?

Dec 16, 2011

We’re hearing more and more about interest in greener schools.  Just today, StatehouseReport.com outlined how some South Carolina legislators — and others across the country — recently traveled to a school in Warren County, Ky., to learn how it got built as the nation’s first net-zero energy school.

The “trick”  to it?  The school was built around the gym and cafeteria, which are two of the biggest energy users in schools.  The school also used photovoltaic panels on top of the school to generate power, some of which was sold back to the local power company.

We first wrote about green schools in our “Better Buildings” chapter in the 2007 “Getting Greener” book.  Take a look at what we wrote then and you’ll see a lot of the same things starting to happen more and more now — daylighting, solar power generation, composting, use of gray water, better recycling, smart switches and more.

Southern school districts and colleges can be leaders in the green movement by constructing more school buildings with an eye to saving energy — a smart cost savings that should appeal to Republicans and Democrats alike.

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