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Environmental Initiatives and Programs

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School boards have a special responsibility to take a leadership role in environmental awareness and action. These environmental principles recognize interdependence, the right to a healthy environment and that everything we do has an effect. 

The Simcoe County District School Board (SCDSB) is committed to helping students, staff and communities understand environmental needs and issues, and respond effectively. Boards have a special responsibility to take a leadership role in environmental awareness and action. These environmental principles recognize interdependence, the right to a healthy environment and that everything we do has an effect.  The SCDSB is committed to helping students, staff and communities understand environmental needs and issues, and respond effectively.


Our commitment to environmental principles is displayed through daily activities, decision-making and planning for the future. The SCDSB provides leadership for system- and school-based programs, projects and events and also encourages community-based events to advance environmental awareness, education and care.

For more information see Policy 2325 - Environmental Policy.


SCDSB Green Teams  

The Simcoe County District School Board’s environmental initiatives require school level support. It is important that every school have a Green Team to co-ordinate staff and student participation in the Board’s recycling, energy conservation and schoolyard greening programs and other environmental initiatives.

The membership of the school level Green Team should include:

  1. Students
  2. One teacher (minimum)
  3. A school level administrator (facilitator)
  4. Custodian (advisor)
  5. School Council

Our SCDSB Green Teams have worked very hard over the years. As a result of their hard work, recycling rates have increased by up to 50% in some schools, waste-free lunch programs have been introduced, gardens have been established, trees planted, energy conservation programs implemented and much more.

Watch the County of Simcoe's Learning and Living Green How-to Video.  


Energy Conservation
 

We strive to conserve energy whenever possible. In order to accomplish energy conservation we focus on three areas of a building; design, operation and the occupants. Read an EcoSchools Energy Conservation Guide.

Design
We are proud of our first LEED Gold certified school, Mundy's Bay Elementary School, in Midland.  Mundy's Bay features many uses of technology and design that ensures sustainability, including a grey water recycling system, ground source heating, a green roof, lighting sensors and the use of day lighting.


Operation
Building Automation Systems have been installed and upgraded at many of our schools, which allows us to control and monitor the heating and ventilation systems in our schools, as well as to ensure that all lights are shut off when the building is closed at the end of the school day. Custodians are trained on how to use the systems to ensure that the building is being operated at maximum efficiency.
 
Occupant Behaviour
We encourage all staff and students to help out by doing such things as turning off lights and electronics in classroom and offices when they are not in use.

Energy Conservation and Demand Management (ECDM) Plan
The SCDSB's Energy Conservation and Demand Management (ECDM) plan was approved by board trustees in June 2014. It laid out the approach and financial framework for achieving utility cost savings of approximately $600,000 per year, over a five-year implementation period, by improving the energy performance of 28 of the SCDSB’s schools and its administration building which had been identified with high energy savings potential. Implementation of the SCDSB’s ECDM Plan was projected to deliver $329,000 in utility company incentives, and avoid 2,757 tonnes per year of greenhouse gas emissions.

With the Greenhouse Gas Funding (GHGF) announced in March 2017, the SCDSB is moving forward on implementing a number of projects in its schools. A total of $550,378 is projected in annual savings, as well as $625,541 in utility company incentives. This will help the SCDSB avoid 1,136 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions per year.

Please refer to the news release for more information.


Green Energy Act Report  

Under the Ministry of Energy’s Green Energy Act (GEA), Ontario Regulation 397-11, broader public sector organizations, such as school boards, are required to report annually on the energy consumption of their sites through an annual GEA report. Each board is required to report on the energy use by all facilities currently in-use by the board.  The use of electricity, natural gas and heating oil for each building is identified in the report below.  The report has been generated using the Ministry of Energy’s reporting template.

As part of Ontario Regulation 397-11, Boards are required to submit their completed report to the Ministry of Energy, post the consumption data for all their sites on both their internet and intranet sites, and provide a hard copy at their Head Office to any interested member of the public.

2014-15 Green Energy Act Report​
2014-15 Green Energy Act Report (Printer Friendly)​​
2013-14 Green Energy Act Report      
2013-14 Green Energy Act Report (Printer Friendly)     
2012-13 Green Energy Act Report   

Five-Year Energy Conservation and Demand Management Plan  


School Ground Greening

School ground greening and enhancement has been very quickly becoming an important issue for schools across the country. Staff, students and communities are becoming aware of the importance of having a schoolyard that nurtures children’s sense of wonder, imagination and creating an inspiring environment for teachers and students to engage in hands-on learning. For more info visit Evergreen, Tree Canada and the Canadian Biodiversity Institute.

Goals for School Ground Greening:

  • Improve children’s health and well-being
  • Nurture child development
  • Increase ecological diversity
  • Increase educational use
  • Improve energy- and cost-efficient design

Benefits for School Ground Greening:

  • Provides shade for children and buildings
  • Provides a place for doing lots of different activities
  • Provides a place for intellectual stimulation
  • Addresses students educational, developmental and social needs