Updated March 26 at 7:54am

R.I. schools to be reviewed for green improvements


SMITHFIELD – Fifty-three public high schools and career technical centers in Rhode Island will be evaluated on potential renewable energy improvements.

The initiative, funded through a $123,244 grant from the Rhode Island Renewable Energy Fund, will determine which renewable energy technologies can be installed at the facilities and how much energy would be generated.

“Our goal is to provide a roadmap for every public high school and career and technical center in Rhode Island that will help them get as close as possible to net-zero energy through practical and cost-effective use of renewable systems,” said project manager Bob Chew, chief energy consultant at R.W. Chew LLC.

Net-zero energy refers to building that generate on-site energy equal to or greater than their consumption.

“When combined with conservation measures, energy-efficient retrofits and a new appreciation about the many benefits resulting from saving energy, the collective impact across the state will be significant,” Chew said.

Technologies that will be considered, according to a news release, include: photovoltaics; solar hot water and solar hot air systems; wind turbines; woodchip boilers; methane digesters; geothermal heating and cooling systems; and micro hydro systems where reliable sources of moving water are available.

The federal grant is administered through Bryant University’s Chafee Center for International Business. The reports will be reviewed at a renewable energy seminar at Bryant in February.


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