Solar One is excited to announce the winners of the 2012/2013 Solar One-NYCDOE Energy Challenge! This year, 55 schools in Solar One’s Sustainable Schools Network worked to reduce their carbon footprint through energy efficiency measures and behavioral change.The challenge took place over a four-month period from December 2012 through March 2013. Throughout the challenge, Solar One worked with participating schools to inspire school communities to save energy. Educators Joe Chavez and Alex Smith delivered assemblies, helped to kick-start energy awareness campaigns, collaborated with school custodians and green teams, and more!
The winners of the challenge are:
- First Place: PS 084 Steinway with a 22% electricity use reduction
- Second Place: PS/MS 194 with a 20% electricity use reduction
- 1st Place for a school in a campus building: Academy for Environmental Leadership with a 19% electricity use reduction
Over a four-month period from December 2012 through March 2013, Solar One-NYCDOE Energy Challenge schools decreased their electricity usage by an average of 6.8%* as compared to the last two school years, saving 907 metric tons of CO2 and $108,536.
Winners will be honored at a NYCDOE Earth Day ceremony.
Solar One would like to congratulate the winners and all of the schools that participated! We are excited to continue our work to empower NYC schools to save energy.
* Does not include 4 school buildings under construction
CleanTech Energy is an innovative, multidisciplinary high-school level curriculum that was designed to increase student knowledge, awareness and understanding of the rapidly evolving field of energy. Beginning with the fundamentals of energy and energy sources, the curriculum follows the arc of energy production, distribution and usage, investigating the environmental, social and economic impacts of each. CleanTech’s unique holistic approach incorporates science, engineering and economic models to examine energy issues such as global trends and consequences of our energy systems and climate change, while local energy use is explored through the lens of building science. Using the school building as a learning laboratory, students will have the opportunity to assess the building with an eye towards increasing efficiency and reducing negative impacts on human health, the environment and climate. Finally, CleanTech introduces the science, emerging technologies and policy of renewable energy sources such as wind, solar and biomass. Complete with a wealth of hands-on activities and student-led investigations, each CleanTech Module contains concepts that support Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) skills with an emphasis on problem-solving, design, innovation and pathways for career exploration.
In coordination with the release of this exciting curriculum, on Monday January 28th, Solar One held the first ever CleanTech Professional Development training. Close to fifty High School teachers joined Solar One education staff at NYU’s Pless Hall to participate with hands-on activities and learn about all the exciting lessons the newly completed CleanTech Energy curriculum has to offer.
Read about what participants have to say about the experience.
“I will definitely be incorporating activities from CleanTech immediately with the Green Team. And I would like to modify them for the Earth Science Labs.” - 9-12th Earth Science Teacher at Samuel Gompers CTE High School
“These activities could fit very nicely into my meteorology and environmental studies course.” - 9-12th Geo-Science. Environmental Science, and Biology teacher, Stuyvesant High School
“These are great lessons, I am really looking forward to using the materials” – Biology teacher, Truman High School
“Solar One has many resources and is readily available and enthusiastic” – Science teacher, Bronx Theater
“The PD was really good, probably the most useful PD I have had in years” – Environmental Science & Urban Ecology teacher, Stuyvesant High School
“Well done and highly informative, Thank you!” – Living Environment, Truman HS
When asked, “Is there a single message that resonated most with you?”
“Remain solution minded when teaching students about climate change” -Chemistry teacher, Park East High School
Expect more news about CleanTECH in the coming months!
A group of interns working with Solar One will soon be presenting their energy audit findings at NYPA. These students from Bayside have been learning science and math skills with the help of NYPA mentors Paul Partmore and Dan Esposito former NYPA college interns. Solar One’ intern program coordinator Dawne Adams couldn’t be more thrilled with the progress the students have made over the past ten weeks.
The team of interns spent weeks taking measurements and detailed records of their school, just like a professional energy auditor would have. They then had to do calculations and real analysis to come to their findings. The students will present their findings to the New York Power Authority (NYPA) next week. They are nervous, but also very excited.
This week, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYS DEC) recognized Solar One’s Green Design Lab™ in-school education program with their prestigious 2012 Environmental Excellence Award, along with six other organizations creating innovative programs to sustain natural resources and strengthen the economy.
DEC Commissioner Joe Martens announced the awards on Wednesday December 5. Here is his statement from the DEC press release:
“As the Cuomo Administration strives to build a new New York, these awardees today are doing just that by making a positive impact on our economy and improving and protecting our state’s environment,” DEC Commissioner Martens said. “Environmental stewardship requires all stakeholders to work in concert: businesses, not-for-profits, schools, municipalities, government and residents. That’s why the Environmental Excellence Awards are so important. Through them, DEC is able to showcase those who are leading by example.”
Along with Solar One, the awardees included private firms that practice outstanding corporate sustainability; schools that empower future environmental leaders; businesses pioneering green technologies; and municipalities investing in green infrastructure.
Congratulations to the Education team! You can read the entire DEC press release here, and you can learn more about the Green Design Lab™ program here.
Solar One Executive Director Chris Collins receives the DEC’s 2012 Environmental Excellence Award for the GDL
From L-R are New York City Department of Education Division of School Facilities CEO, John Shea; Custodian of PS 194 Anibal Maldonado; Principal of PS 194, Rosa Sifuentes-Rosado; and Executive Director, Solar One, Chris Collins. Sarah Pidgeon, at right, is the Director of Education at Solar One.
Out of the twenty-two schools that participated in this year’s Green Design Lab Energy Challenge, P.S./M.S. 194 in The Bronx rose to the top, cutting its energy use by 21%, and winning the $12,000 prize for first place. The runners up, PS 84-Steinway, in Astoria, and the Academy for Environmental Leadership, Bushwick Campus, in Bushwick, reduced energy use by 17 and 14 percent, respectively, to win $9,000 each.
The Green Design Lab is program by Solar One that teaches students about energy and electricity. The Energy Challenge is the culmination of a year’s worth of learning, where the schools square off to see who can cut their electricity bills by the most. The average savings of all the schools combined was over 8%, saving the school system $75,000.
Read the full press release.
Solar One’s Green Design Lab program is now accepting applications for the 2012/2013 school year! This program uses the school building itself to teach about the environment, energy, food, water, materials and air quality, all while helping students”green” their school building. Click HERE to download the RFP and instructions.
We got a nice piece of coverage
today on Sunday from the folks over at NY1 as part of their Connect A Million Minds initiative. The article and video look at our Green Design Lab program being conducted with partner school Baruch College Campus High School. Solar One educator Joe Chavez is featured along with students and the school’s principal. The Green Design Lab – our fastest growing program – is currently running in over 2 dozen schools through the end of the semester and will be looking for new schools to partner with in the fall. We have a great team developing and delivering the program and it’s always nice to receive some recognition for all the hard work they put in. Thanks, NY1!