Charleston County School District Develops Energy-Efficiency Strategies

Whole Building Systems, an engineering and energy efficiency consulting firm that serves commercial, governmental, educational, commercial, and historic preservation sectors, is partnering with the Charleston County School District (CCSD) to make its new and existing buildings more sustainable, safe, and energy-efficient.

CCSD has recently built many new schools based on high-performance energy criteria. Today, Whole Building Systems (WBS) is performing energy modeling and analysis to help CCSD to bring the existing, older schools up to the same high-performance levels of the new construction, while improving the indoor environmental quality in all facilities.

WBS has worked with CCSD on strategies to improve the energy efficiency and indoor air quality of its facilities, including the creation of an Owners Project Requirements template for four downtown Charleston schools that are currently undergoing seismic retrofits. In an effort to establish performance criteria for energy consumption and overall sustainability, WBS created educational content and workshop presentations for the architects, engineers, building owners, and facility personnel engaged with CCSD. The Owners Project Requirements template will serve to guide the establishment of energy targets and provide the guidance on staff training for all future retrofits of CCSD buildings. WBS and CCSD also worked cooperatively to establish guidelines for ongoing facility maintenance and operations.

In its most-recent engagement with CCSD, WBS is now helping to establish a District-wide Energy Protocol. As part of that Protocol, a team facilitated by WBS will work to create performance benchmarks for existing buildings, establish energy targets, create policies that can help meet targets, and motivate staff and students to help meet energy-efficiency goals.