EnergyUnited helps to fund an Iredell County school’s energy efficiency upgrades

EnergyUnited helps to fund an Iredell County school’s energy efficiency upgrades

West Iredell High School will benefit from the energy efficiency project.

EnergyUnited, the Touchstone Energy cooperative headquartered in Statesville, is helping to provide local students a better learning environment by securing $1.3 million for the Iredell County school system. The package of a $1 million loan and a $300,000 grant came from the USDA Rural Economic Development (REDLG) program. When combined with $640,000 in matching county funds and a $60,000 zero-interest matching loan from EnergyUnited itself, the funding will provide $2 million to improve energy efficiency at West Iredell High School.

The school will replace current T12 lighting with more energy-efficient LED and compact fluorescent lighting. The school's heating, ventilation and air conditioning system will also be upgraded. The improvements are expected to save the school system $35,000 to $48,000 a year in energy costs, as well as provide a more comfortable learning and teaching environment for students and teachers.

Kenny Miller, assistant superintendent for facilities/planning at Iredell-Statesville Schools, said: "REDLG funding is one of many partnerships between Iredell-Statesville Schools and EnergyUnited. EnergyUnited continues to be a model partner with the community and schools through Bright Ideas grants, energy efficiency projects, innovative project financing and support through economic and consistent power generation."

"EnergyUnited has had a long-standing relationship with the Iredell-Statesville school district," said Tim Holder, EnergyUnited's vice president of sales and economic development. "We saw this as a good opportunity to continue to work with and give back to the community by focusing on a number of important energy efficiency measures at this school."

The funding EnergyUnited acquired from the USDA will continue to benefit the community. The $300,000 zero-interest grant also serves as a revolving fund for EnergyUnited. When repaid, the co-op can then loan these funds back into the community for other projects.

—Renee Gannon

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