Many schools want to reduce their energy costs, and carbon emissions as well as helping their students to become ‘carbon literate’. But experience from initiatives around the UK shows that making the long-term and cultural changes needed to do this can be difficult.
As part of their work with schools Bristol City Council approached Climate Works to find out what the key ingredients for a successful initiative are, as part of the council’s wider carbon reduction framework.
We reviewed 10 schools from Durham to Cornwall each of which has received awards for their work on energy efficiency, awareness and carbon reduction. Strikingly no two schools had approached this in the same way, but despite the diversity of initiatives we identified eight common factors which are critical to the success of these initiatives. These are not prescriptive, so they leave the ‘how’ part of this very much up to schools themselves.
For schools considering installing a PV system including ‘free’ PV systems on offer from third parties CWL have also prepared guidance on what to look out for and some of the issues to be considered before making a decision.
St Columb Minor Academy, in Cornwall, UK Primary School Winner of the Ashden Awards in Sustainable Energy, 2010. Photos: Ashden Awards for Sustainable Energy, www.ashdenawards.org