Ameresco, Inc. (NYSE:AMRC), a leading energy efficiency and renewable energy company, announced today the start of major work in its Energy Savings Performance Contract (ESPC) with Ovid-Elsie Area Schools in central Michigan. The $1.1 million ESPC is expected to save the Schools more than $85,000 annually, and includes facility improvements at all of the Schools’ locations. Located in the middle of the state between Grand Rapids and Detroit, the Ovid-Elsie Area Schools serves 1,700 students. The comprehensive energy project includes upgrades to four schools and the administration building. Ovid-Elsie Area Schools include the Leonard Elementary School, E. Knight Elementary School, Ovid-Elsie Middle School, and Ovid-Elsie High School. “Ameresco is working with us to accelerate our energy savings through an Energy Savings Performance Contract. During these tough economic times, it was helpful to use avoided energy expenses rather than the Schools’ capital to fund necessary building improvements,” said Dr. Ryan Cunningham, Superintendent of Ovid-Elsie Area Schools. “Our goal is to provide the highest quality level of education for our students and these facility improvements certainly help us do that while reducing overall expenses to the Schools.” To finance this project, Ovid-Elsie Area Schools took advantage of Qualified Zone Academy Bonds, which provide the Schools with a near-zero percent interest rate. Under an ESPC, Ameresco guarantees the energy cost savings for the duration of the contract which will repay the upfront costs with a portion of their projected annual savings over the contract’s 15 years. “The School Board and Administrators at Ovid-Elsie Area Schools are leaders in the Michigan education market,” said Louis P. Maltezos, executive vice president at Ameresco. “They championed critical building enhancement initiatives in support of the Schools’ education mission. Ameresco is honored to be their partner and assist in sustaining their assets and driving the implementation of best practices to protect and enhance the Schools’ financial and environmental potential.”
The upgrades in this project will include the following:
- Comprehensive Lighting Program – the installation of a state-of-the-art lighting system, to replace or upgrade approximately 370 existing fixtures;
- Energy Management System – the integration of the latest and industry-leading automation program for energy and environment management;
- Mechanical and HVAC Replacements – the replacement of boilers with new high efficiency boilers;
- Building Improvements – insulation improvements to reduce energy costs across all of the Schools’ facilities;
- Water Conservation Upgrades – the installation of a state-of-the-art plumbing system to reduce water consumption, wastewater production, and hot water energy use;
- New Ceiling Grid – lower ceilings in the Middle School to reduce the echo, improve lighting, and provide energy savings due to less space to heat.