100% Clean Energy School Districts
Sierra Club’s Climate Parents and Ready for 100% campaigns are collaborating to move school districts around the country to commit to 100% clean energy. 100% clean energy school districts has big advantages for student and community health as well as climate health. And they can help build momentum across the country for 100% clean energy. Ready for 100 has already moved nearly 100 US cities to commit to 100% clean energy. School districts--at the heart of our communities--are key institutions to mobilize too!
School districts are major energy consumers--so shiting to 100% clean energy can have big impact. In fact, the square footage of the buildings and land managed by school districts amounts to half the square footage of commercial office buildings across the country. The carbon pollution that comes from powering school districts with fossil fuels amounts to that produced by 17 coal plants--so transitioning to clean energy is an important priority.
100% clean energy benefits school districts in many key ways:
Saves under-resourced school districts money that can be invested into students and classrooms:
- The second largest expense after personnel of most school districts is energy. Districts around the country are already saving millions of dollars by transitioning to clean energy.
- Energy efficiency measures alone can save US schools $2 billion/year--a quarter of total energy costs.
Improves students health and academic performance:
- Energy efficiency investments can be targeted to improve the health of the buildings where students spend their time. Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that health effects from poor ventilation, uncomfortable temperatures
Helps create STEM learning opportunities for students:
- We schools and school districts commit tot 100% clean energy, there are multiple ways to integrate clean energy and climate content into curriculum (e.g. into science classrooms, into the physical space, such as with energy savings dashboards, etc).
Expands community resilience:
- According to the Red Cross, most shelter spaces during disasters are at school sites. Moving to 100% clean energy and installing solar plus storage could help ensure that shelters have access to power in times of emergency need.
Positions schools and school districts as leaders on climate action!
- School board members and school district leaders are also important civic leaders that can influence their peers at all levels of government as we seek to transform our whole society to 100% clean energy. They’ve got credibility as leaders of students and youth. When school districts embrace 100% clean energy, they are walking the talk of implementing climate solutions for our kids and broader communities.
Sierra Club's Climate Parents and Ready for 100 campaigns want to work with you and your school district to make the shift to 100% clean energy. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved, and also click here.