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MEA awards nearly $700K to stimulate energy efficiency in 7 Md. school districts

The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) on Wednesday announced grant awards for seven Maryland public school districts through its Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) Decarbonizing Public Schools program.

The grants will help finance school districts’ resource capacities for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and overall lifecycle costs while planning the development of high-performance schools.

Grant awardees include Prince George’s County Public Schools ($140,000), Baltimore County Public Schools ($135,000), Anne Arundel County Public Schools ($82,000), St. Mary’s County Public Schools ($75,000), Somerset County Public Schools ($60,000), Cecil County Public Schools ($70,000) and Montgomery County Public Schools ($124,000).

The MEA developed the program in partnership with the Interagency Commission on School Construction (IAC) to help Maryland schools manage energy and plan for the construction of schools that employ cutting-edge net-zero-energy designs. In general, buildings built to be net-zero-energy are designed to generate more energy onsite than they use.

The school decarbonization program is a new initiative from MEA, launched in response to the growing need for high-performance schools and to help LEAs build the capacity to meet new energy requirements in concert with reduced environmental impacts. Expanding energy management and portfolio-planning capacities is challenging for many school districts, which often lack the experience or resources required to perform energy management.