Southborough schools pursue energy savings

Above: The lights at Trottier will be getting an upgrade

It will soon cost a lot less to keep the lights on at the Southborough schools. Facilities Manager David White told the Southborough School Committee last night new efficiency programs will save the district nearly $50K annually in energy costs.

White said he is working aggressively with National Grid and NStar to take advantage of programs the utilities offer to lower energy consumption. One of the programs will replace all outdoor lighting at Southborough’s four public schools with energy-efficient LED lights.

The total cost to replace the fixtures and bulbs will be more than $70K. National Grid will cover about 90% of the cost, leaving the schools to pay just $7K. White said the district should make back that and more in the first year alone, with annual savings from the project estimated to be about $12K.

White said the cost-savings is just one of the benefits. “We’re going to become greener,” he said. “I’m very happy about all of this.”

The LED bulbs are guaranteed to last for 50,000 hours. “I think it’s safe to say I won’t have to replace those bulbs again in my career,” White said.

Other energy programs include updating ventillation systems at Trottier, Woodward, and Finn to make them more efficient. The cost for that initiative is estimated to be about $120K. The contribution by National Grid and NStar is still being determined, but White said the upgrade could save the schools $35K annually.

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