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Energy Program Highlights

posted Feb 20, 2013, 6:47 AM by Robert Lovett   [ updated Mar 24, 2014, 8:09 AM ]
The following are some bits of information that illustrate the accomplishments of the Penn Harris Madison Energy Conservation Program.
  All of the successes to follow come from the diligent efforts of the entire Penn Harris Madison Staff


  • Since the program’s inception in January of 2007 through January 2012 we have avoided paying $3,374,093.00 to our electricity, natural gas and water vendors.
  • For the past 4 years we have saved over $600,000 per year ranging from a low of $621,000 to this year’s $663,000.
  •   Our combined energy use (including electricity, natural gas and water), measured in KBTUs, has had a steady decline when compared to the year before we started our conservation efforts (2006).  In 2007 we had a modest 7% decrease in use and that figure has steadily gotten lower including this year’s 20% decrease.
  •   The amount of money we spend on our utilities has declined also.  In 2006 we spent $2,030,330.00 on all our utilities.  Each year since that amount has gotten smaller.  This past year we spent $1,844,259.00.  
  • This 9% decrease in spending comes even though we’ve had an overall increase of 13.7% of the cost of these products.  Over the past 6 years we have had a 21% increase in our electricity costs, a 33% decrease in our natural gas prices and a 42% increase in the cost of municipal water.
  • All these unadjusted successes come in the face of some major additions to our energy use.  Two examples are the addition of air conditioning to the Main Arena at Penn High and the cooling equipment added to the new corporation server room at Schmucker.
  • We’ve also done a number of things with equipment that have benefited our efforts.  Some examples are:
    • At the High School we retrofitted the Main Arena and the Auxiliary Gym with high bay lighting that uses ½ the power of the old lights and are designed to last 5 times longer.
    • Also at the High School we upgraded the building’s Energy Management System (EMS) giving us better control over the heating and cooling equipment and the common area lighting.  
    • We did the same at Schmucker and Grissom Middle Schools.
    • The computers that we’ve purchased as we upgrade use less electricity than they did in 2006.
    • At Bittersweet Elementary we replaced an inefficient water heater.
    •  At Prairie Vista and Elm Road Elementary Schools we replaced heat pump units with newer, more efficient units.
    • More work is to come on EMS equipment that will improve our efficiency.