FCPS Earns 2017 Energy Star® Partner of the Year Award
Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) has been named a 2017 Energy Star® Partner of the Year-Energy Management Award winner for its efforts to improve the energy efficiency of its buildings and facilities. The school district’s accomplishments will be recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Energy in Washington, D.C., on April 26.
FCPS earned the EPA’s Energy Star certification in 2015 and also has the most schools meeting Energy Star standards of any school division in the country.
This past fall, schools participated in the Energy Star Battle of the Buildings contest, designed to help students and staff members become aware of saving energy, helping to save money, and lowering greenhouse gas emissions. FCPS schools are currently participating in a district-wide competition that ends April 30.
The school district also has an active energy conservation program that tracks the use and cost of energy in keeping with the School Board’s environmental stewardship policy. The energy conservation and management program, which began in February 2014, began as one of many throughout FCPS to reduce operating costs and increase efficiency. Using 240 computerized Energy Management Systems, FCPS is able to control how and when heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems operate, saving millions of dollars a year by reducing energy consumption. Using the EPA Energy Star Building Benchmarking system, FCPS has 190 buildings benchmarked against a national database and monitored monthly.
FCPS’s Get2Green program engages students in environmental action such as recycling, composting, building wildlife and native plant habitats, conserving energy, and growing food. It partners with the National Wildlife Federation’s Eco-Schools USA program, providing a framework for student involvement and action. FCPS has more green flag schools (12, plus 4 schools with double green flags) than any school district in the U.S. FCPS is also a charter member of the Green Schools Alliance District Collaborative, a group of 21 large districts combining their collective power to support greener, more efficient solutions to environmental sustainability.
FCPS was recognized by the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments with the 2016 Climate and Energy Leadership Award in the educational institution category for the Get2Green program, and by the Virginia School Boards Association as a Certified Green School Division in 2016.