St. Andrew's to Switch to 100% Renewable Energy by 2020
St. Andrew's to Switch to 100% Renewable Energy by 2020
Eden Rickolt ’16

St. Andrew's Environmental Stewards are excited to announce that the School will be running on 100% renewable electricity by the year 2020. In the fall of 2017, the Environmental Stewards (a student leadership group that promotes sustainable practices across the School) proposed that St. Andrew's use the savings it has been accruing from its solar array to cover the costs of transferring the School's electricity to 100% renewable energy sources.

In the year 2015-16, the School's carbon footprint—which includes student travel to and from St. Andrew's, where all students board—was estimated to be 5,700 metric tons annually. Transitioning to 100% renewable electricity by 2020 will cut the School's carbon footprint in half.

This initiative builds off a well-established St. Andrew's tradition of student-led sustainable actions; the School's 50kW solar array was itself a student proposal. In 2014, students created a task force around the project, which researched solar array technology, developed a proposal, received approval by our Board of Trustees, secured major grant funding, and helped bring in donations from our community. (Members of the Class of 2015 are seen here on installation day in 2014.) The array has been producing energy for St. Andrew's since December 2014, and in its first year of use, exceeding its projected electricity production by 13%, saving the School more than $6,000 in energy costs.

The switchover to 100% renewable energy "is just another sign of how committed our community is to doing our part to fight climate change," says Director of Sustainability Diana Burk. "We hope our commitment will inspire other schools and communities to obtain their energy from clean renewable resources, and that these commitments combined will help our world solve the climate crisis."