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Eastern BOP Schools to be $50,000 better off

JOINT MEDIA RELEASE FROM THE ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CONSERVATION AUTHORITY (EECA) AND THE EASTERN BAY ENERGY TRUST (EBET)

21 October 2003

Eastern BOP Schools to be $50,000 better off

The results of energy audits on 14 schools in the Eastern Bay of Plenty were announced at a meeting in Whakatane last night - and show savings of almost 20% can be easily achieved.

The audits, funded by the Eastern Bay Energy Trust (EBET) and the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA) found that up to $50,000 p.a. can be cut from the $270,000 p.a. currently spent on energy at the 14 audited schools.

EECA Chief Executive Heather Staley said that's a significant amount of money that schools can better spend on children and extra education resources. It's also a significant amount of energy that doesn't need to be used.

"Of the $50,000 that can be saved, $33,000 of that is from simple measures that can be done immediately, such as reducing hot water temperatures to recommended levels and removing unneeded lighting."

"The capital investment required for the rest of the savings to be made, has a pay-back period of about three years," Ms Staley said.

EECA is using the results from these audits to put together a picture of savings that can be implemented in schools across the country. "Nationally, there are some 2,700 schools spending $30 million every year on energy. Using these audits as an example, New Zealand schools could reduce their energy bills by almost $6 million dollars annually," said Ms Staley.

Toni Owen, Chair of the EBET, says that there are also benefits to the community as the work required to increase the energy efficiency of the schools will be carried out by local contractors. "Installation of timers on electric heaters, light sensors, and insulation in classrooms can be done by contractors based right here in our community."

"The benefits of the energy audit are three-fold - schools reduce the amount they need to spend on energy, greater resources can be provided, and we contribute to our local economy," said Mrs Owen.

Ms Staley applauded the huge commitment made to improving energy efficiency in their community by the EBET. The school audits are a new initiative for the Trust, which has been funding residential insulation projects for the past five years.

Ms Staley says EECA is implementing the National Energy Efficiency and Conservation Strategy through improving energy choices. For more information on EECA visit www.energywise.org.nz

ENDS


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