For Immediate Release: January 14, 1997
Media Contact: Claudia Chandler -- 916 - 654 - 4989

Energy Commission's Bright Schools Program
Commended by Department of Energy

For its efforts to help schools cut energy costs, the California Energy Commission's Bright Schools Partnership Program has received a Certificate of Recognition from the United States Department of Energy.

Presented to the Energy Commission as part of the 1996 National Awards for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, the certificate recognizes the program "for its outstanding contributions in promoting an environmentally sustainable energy future."

"The Bright Schools Partnership Program helps small to mid-sized school districts cut their energy costs," explained Stephen Rhoads, Executive Director of Energy Commission in Sacramento. As a result, taxpayers save money and schools reduce waste, freeing up much needed funds for other more pressing needs."

In 1996, the Commission loaned more than $1.26 million to school districts willing to improve their energy efficiency. As a result, California schools have saved over $227,000 a year on their energy bills.

"A true win-win program, Bright Schools successfully fosters cooperation between local, state and federal governments and private industry," said Rhoads.

Besides the Energy Commission, other key members of the Bright Schools Partnership Program are the California Conservation Corps, the Department of General Services' Office of Energy Assessments, investor-owned and municipal utility companies, private sector energy service companies, architectural and engineering firms, municipal lease and lending institutions, and professional trade associations.

"While reducing energy waste, the program contributes to California's economic growth and improving environmental quality," said Rhoads. "As many as 100 new jobs can be attributed to Bright Schools energy efficiency projects."

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