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Crystal River Elementary School (Carbondale, Colo.) selected as contestant in EPA National Building Competition

Release Date: 04/28/2010
Contact Information: Patty Crow, 303-312-6464; Richard Mylott, 303-312-6654

Will compete to “work off the waste” with help from ENERGY STAR program

(Denver, Colorado – April 28, 2010) Crystal River Elementary School, part of the Roaring Fork School District in Garfield County, Colo., has been selected to participate in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA's) first national competition among commercial buildings to save energy and fight climate change.

In the spirit of popular weight-loss competitions, students from Carbondale’s Crystal River Elementary School will compete against 13 other buildings across the country to “work off the waste” through improvements in energy efficiency with help from EPA’s Energy Star program. The building that sheds the most energy waste on a percentage basis will be recognized as the winner of EPA’s National Building Competition in October 2010.

“Every dollar we save in energy can be turned into classroom dollars for teachers, books and computers. Energy Star makes this simple to do and Roaring Fork School District is honored to be a part of the EPA National Building Competition,” said Shannon Pelland, the school district’s assistant superintendent. "This Energy Star project is part of the Garfield New Energy Communities Initiative, which is committed to improving energy efficiency across the county. We look forward to seeing how we measure up against other buildings across the nation.”

“Carbondale Middle School Energy Champions will be working with the younger students and staff at Crystal River Elementary to help the school save energy and save money,” Pelland said.

Nearly 200 buildings applied to participate in the National Building Competition, which will judge the energy performance of the 14 finalists from September 1, 2009 to August 31, 2010. The energy use of each building is being monitored with EPA’s online measurement and tracking tool, Portfolio Manager. Contestants will receive technical assistance from EPA as well as energy fitness advice from celebrity trainer Bob Harper. Each building will participate in a mid-point weigh-in and post its results online at the competition website. Twitter updates by contestants will also be available at www.twitter.com/EnergyStarBldgs/contestants

“Buildings of all shapes and sizes are saving money and energy with help from EPA and Energy Star,” said Jean Lupinacci, director of EPA’s Energy Star Commercial Buildings program. “We applaud the contestants of EPA’s National Building Competition for taking action to protect the environment and fight climate change.”

According to EPA, energy use in commercial buildings accounts for 17 percent of total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions at a cost of more than $100 billion per year. On average, 30% of the energy used in commercial buildings is wasted. Thousands of businesses and organizations work with the EPA’s Energy Star program and are saving billions of dollars and preventing millions of tons of greenhouse gas emissions from entering our atmosphere each year.

Roaring Fork School District serves 14 schools in Glenwood Springs, Carbondale and Basalt, Colorado.

Learn more about the National Building Competition: www.energystar.gov/BuildingContest
Learn more about Energy Star: www.energystar.gov/buildings
Learn more about Carbondale’s Energy Star Project: http://www.rfsdenergycenter.com/