Minnesota Schools Cutting Carbon

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Minnesota Schools Cutting Carbon helped over 100 high schools, colleges, and universities in the state save money and reduce their carbon footprints through online tools, technical assistance, and mini-grants. It was a collaborative initiative of the Clean Energy Resource Teams, Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, Minnesota Office of Energy Security, and supporting partners.

The program is focused on helping schools reduce their carbon in two ways:
1. Supporting carbon-cutting student-led projects
2. Working on school building operation and maintenance improvements

Through action by the 100 participating schools, as well as energy efficiency and renewable energy grants, the Minnesota Schools Cutting Carbon program is saving schools 32.4 billion BTUs of energy and $625,000 in energy costs every year. Participating schools are collectively reducing their carbon dioxide emissions by 15.7 million lbs-that's the equivalent of taking 1,700 cars off of Minnesota roads!

Beginning in the fall of 2009 and ending in the fall of 2011, Patrick Santelli with CERTs and other MnSCC partners worked with approximately 7,000 students in 100 public high schools, colleges and universities. The students and their eacher "coaches" were a real inspiration throughout the program. Their creativity and leadership in finding ways to save energy and money at school-as well as their efforts to build leadership and entrepreneurship among students, and their crafting of math and science lessons around renewable energy and energy efficiency-were truly a joy to watch.

Funding for this project was provided by Minnesota Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund as recommended by Legislative-Citizen Commission on Minnesota Resources.

Although the Schools Cutting Carbon program is no longer active, we encourage schools interested in working on projects to contact Joel Haskard with Clean Energy Resource Teams via haska004@umn.edu, or 612-625-8759. To contact project leaders at individual schools, visit http://www.schoolscuttingcarbon.org/schools.

Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA)
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Target Audience: 
Grades Pre K-12
Geographic Location: 
All Minnesota
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