|EMSB TAKES BOLD STEP TOWARDS ENERGY EFFICENCY|
MONTREAL, MARCH 13, 2015- The English Montreal School Board has begun its second major initiative aimed at bolstering energy efficiency in school buildings. This $24.6 million project with energy efficiency experts Énergère will initially focus on 17 specific schools and centers.
This new project with Énergère includes, among other measures, equipment renewal and modernization using aerothermal technology, replacing 25,300 lights and the addition of automated controls to enhance the comfort of staff and students. Once the project is completed, the 17 buildings will achieve a 53 percent reduction in energy consumption and 74 percent or 4,070 tons of CO2 reduction in greenhouse gas emissions per year, equivalent to removing more than 1 270 cars from the road.
All lighting fixtures will be converted from fluorescent to the latest in LED technology, which will save energy, last longer, and simplify maintenance while maintaining or enhancing lighting levels. This measure alone will account for $9 million of the budget. Savings are projected to amount to more than $1.17 million per year once all measures are in place. The initial investment is expected to be covered in 14 years, taking into account $9.9 million in grants from Hydro-Québec, Gaz Métro, Bureau de l’efficacité et de l’innovation énergétiques (BEIÉ) and the Ministry of Education, Leisure and Sports (MELS).
The EMSB received proposals from three firms for this project, of which Énergère’s was deemed to be the best. The company presented the EMSB Council of Commissioners with a detailed study which confirmed the results projected by their original proposal submitted last spring.
““The process to choose a firm was rigorous and we followed it very precisely,” said EMSB Chairman Angela Mancini. “The proposal we retained met and surpassed the goals we set and when completed and paid, will provide the EMSB with important savings that will allow us to increase and improve services to students across the Board.”
Énergère guarantees the project on three levels: costs, incentives, and energy savings. It is a win-win, turnkey project that fits well with the objectives of the EMSB Green Plan and will benefit the community at large.
Added Daniel Hogue, EMSB Director of Material Resources: “The project provides us with leading-edge energy technology, more control points that will ensure greater comfort for students and staff while offering the EMSB greater control over maintenance and associated operational costs.”
Quebec Minister of Sustainable Development, Environment and the Fight against Climate Change David Heurtel, the MNA for the riding of Viau, attended the press conference and applauded the initiative.
Work began in February and will be completed by December 2015.
“The project will put the EMSB in line or ahead of the targets for energy efficiency set by the government and we will be leaders in terms of environmental awareness and concrete actions that show our level of commitment,” stated Ms. Mancini. “When the project is fully implemented at least 11 of the 17 schools will qualify to be certified carbon-neutral. That is something of which our entire Board can be rightly proud.”
The 17 schools and centres are: Rosemount High School and Technology Centre and Pierre Elliott Trudeau Elementary School in Rosemount; Gerald McShane Elementary School in Montreal North; Dante Elementary School in St. Léonard; Royal West Academy in Montreal West; Leonardo Da Vinci Academy, Michelangelo International and East Hill Elementary Schools in Rivière des Prairies; St. Gabriel Elementary School in Pointe St.-Charles; John F. Kennedy High School and Adult Education Centre in St.-Michel; High School of Montreal Adult Education Centre in the Plateau; Marymount Academy International in NDG; Laurier Macdonald High School and Vocational Centre and John Paul I Junior High School in St. Léonard; St. Pius X Career Centre in Ahuntsic; Shadd Business and Health Centre in NDG; Roslyn Elementary School in Westmount.
Énergère and the EMSB have also announced a partnership with Jour De la Terre Québec. Jour de la Terre Québec director Pierre Lussier attended the press conference and elaborated upon plans for members of his organization to conduct workshops at schools during the week of Earth Day, which is April 22. They will make presentations on energy efficiency and offer solutions to help protect the environment.
“It should be pointed out that 2015 has been proclaimed as the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies,” commented Jean-Philippe Hardy, assistant director of engineering for Énergère. “Our publicity campaign is a good way to get this message out.”
The EMSB plans to launch a poster campaign by the end of March and a competition for primary schools. Nathalie Cloutier, a science teacher at John F. Kennedy High School, explained that her Grade 10 students already study energy conservation as part of the curriculum she puts forward.
Énergère’s project follows up the first phase which occurred in 2009 when another company outfitted six schools with technology that cut their energy bills by 47 percent. This amounted to an annual reduction of 2,480 tons of greenhouse gases and greatly reduced the EMSB’s carbon footprint, equivalent to removing 765 cars from the road. The company optimized the heating network and ventilation, installed more efficient hot water boilers, efficient lighting and heat recovery equipment which included geothermal heating and heat pump systems. This investment of $8.4 million had an 11 year payback plan.
Michael J. Cohen