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School sustainability projects to help boost regional economies - Hipkins

Contributor:
Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media

Forty one schools from the Far North to Southland will receive funding for projects that will reduce schools’ emissions and save them money, Education Minister Chris Hipkins announced today.

This is the second round of the Sustainability Contestable Fund, and work will begin immediately. The first round announced in April supported projects at 53 schools.

Chris Hipkins said the Government is accelerating investment where projects can begin straight away to support local jobs.

"A total investment of around $2.5 million has been allocated to the successful schools in this round, for a total of $5 million across both rounds of the Fund," Chris Hipkins said.

"These initiatives will reduce carbon emissions and costs for schools across the country.

"For example, at Ladbrooks School- in Halswell, has installed new LED Lighting system, new low-flow tap fittings, a heat pump system to replace old electric hot water cylinders, and more efficient heat pumps to replace electric fan and panel heaters with the Fund.

"At Randwick School- in Lower Hutt where 48 solar panels are being installed, it’s estimated that it will save the school more than $2600 in the first year they’re installed. We expect the school to save more than $65,000 over 25 years. Another example is replacing coal with a wood chip or wood pellet boiler which will typically reduce carbon emissions by more than 95%.

"I’m really impressed to see the variety of projects being funded. As we saw in Round One, solar panels and boiler replacement projects are popular. But we’ve seen plenty of other innovations funded, including rainwater collection, water conservation initiatives, composting and recycling alternatives.

"It was great to see that one of New Zealand’s most isolated schools has been supported through the Fund. Halfmoon Bay School on Rakiura/Stewart Island are installing a series of solar panels and battery storage, which will reduce their dependence on diesel.

"I’d also expect these projects to help build business confidence by providing a pipeline of work for local suppliers and contractors, such as plumbers, gasfitters, electricians and builders," Chris Hipkins said.

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