Tucson Electric Power is helping Sahuarita Unified School District ace its test to save energy and promote sustainability, just one example of our company’s support of efficiency at schools.

Earlier this year, the district earned a rebate check of $184,000 from TEP for equipping three schools with an energy management system (EMS), a tool to help control heating and cooling costs.

In recent years, TEP also has provided energy-efficient LED lighting at those same three schools – Walden Grove High, Sopori Elementary and Anza Trail Elementary – as part of our Schools Energy Efficiency Program. Our discount and rebate programs have regularly supported schools throughout our community.

Over the past decade, the Sahuarita district has made its operations greener by installing photovoltaic solar systems, updating heating and cooling systems, and adding other hardware. With all of the measures in place, the district projects that it will save more than $1 million in electricity costs annually.

“This overall project has been a success on multiple fronts, including stabilizing energy costs, supporting our educational mission, utilizing available natural resources, and being good public stewards of our environment,” said Sahuarita Superintendent Manuel Valenzuela.

TEP’s rebates for the energy management systems were a significant factor in helping the district develop projections for savings. The new systems allow school employees to schedule and control heating and cooling remotely or on campus computers to set the right temperature when students and teachers are occupying buildings and classrooms.

“One of the main goals of the Sahuarita School District is to be seen by their community as environmental advocates. They want parents and community members to know that their money is being well spent,” said Aracely Lucero, Senior Key Account Manager who collaborates with local schools. “It’s great for them to invest the money wisely; they are not only helping themselves, but also the community and the environment.”

Including Sahuarita, TEP has provided rebates and discounts to schools throughout Southern Arizona. Since 2016, TEP has worked with 119 schools to retrofit existing lighting systems with high-efficiency LED lights through the Schools Energy Efficiency Program, resulting in energy savings of nearly 14 million kilowatt hours. The total cost of the lighting and installation was about $3.5 million.

In 2017, TEP provided about $800,000 in energy efficiency rebates through energy-saving improvements and student programs at Sunnyside Unified School District. We also supported a “Battle of the Buildings” in which three of the district’s schools competed to save the most energy over 90 days.

In addition, TEP regularly works alongside schools and districts, including Tucson Unified, Flowing Wells and Marana, to identify rebates and savings on energy-efficient upgrades for their campuses.

“I’d like to express appreciation to TEP for their active engagement and support of our shared goal to operate in the most energy-efficient manner possible,” Valenzuela said. “The energy rebate exemplifies this spirit of community and shared purpose. Together, we will continue to make a difference in the community we serve.

Read more about ways TEP supports schools.

Learn how schools can qualify for rebates through TEP Commercial Energy Solutions program.

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