Driving Innovation

Savings and Sustainability is All the Rage as ComEd helps the Waukegan Public Schools (WPS) to Install Energy-Efficient Upgrades and Lower Their Energy Bills

May 3, 2022

Waukegan Public Schools (WPS) and ComEd celebrated the completion of a five-year, 51-project energy-efficiency effort that is estimated to save WPS more than $609,000 a year on its overall electric bills.

ComEd is committed to the environment and is proud to support environmental stewardship in communities it’s privileged to serve.

Since December 2017, WPS has collaborated with the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program and its authorized energy efficiency service providers to swap out existing electric equipment with reliable, resilient and energy-efficient lighting fixtures and bulbs; surge protected outlets and smart strips; refrigeration and kitchen parts and equipment; fire exit signs; air conditioner components and other energy-saving measures at multiple school buildings.

“We believe everyone has an equal right to clean air and affordable energy, which is why we are proud to offer energy efficiency programs to help customers save energy and money, while helping to mitigate the impacts of climate change,” said Melissa Washington, senior vice president of customer operations for ComEd. “ComEd is honored to be part of such a massive undertaking with the Waukegan Public Schools to enhance the environment by improving lighting in classrooms, halls, gymnasiums, parking lots and other areas accessed by students, staff and the community.”

In recent years, Waukegan Public Schools, also known as Waukegan Community Unit School District #60, has made efforts to take advantage of all the incentives offered by utilities to improve the district’s energy efficiency. This year alone, the district switched from fluorescent lighting to LED lighting in 26 school buildings throughout the district. District staff also worked with ComEd-recommended engineers to study building automation systems and implement recommended changes to improve efficiency. Most recently, the district worked with ComEd to install smart power strips that cut down on residual draws of electricity from idling computer screens and printers.

“As a district, we’re always eager to take advantage of opportunities to improve our energy-efficiency,” said Kevin Kruckeberg, Waukegan Public Schools director of operations. “As our costs to operate are reduced, we are able to better serve our students. The cost savings we have realized are being applied to overdue maintenance and building improvement projects to benefit the safety and health of our students and staff.”

Facility assessments and installations were completed at WPS during evening hours to follow social-distancing protocols at the time and avoid disrupting day-to-day operations. The combined energy savings of all 51 projects is estimated to be more than 6 million kilowatt-hours (kWh), which is the annual equivalent of reducing more than 6.4 million pounds of carbon emissions from the atmosphere, removing nearly 650 cars from the road or powering over 700 ComEd-equivalent homes. In addition to the money and energy savings that will result from the completion of the energy efficiency upgrades, WPS received more than $1.8 million in incentives by working through the ComEd Energy Efficiency Program.

ComEd puts its commitment to the environment into action

Since 2008, ComEd Energy Efficiency Program has saved northern Illinois families and businesses approximately $6.7 billion on their electric bills and received recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for 12 consecutive years.

For more information on how ComEd helps customers save money and energy, visit ComEd.com/HomeSavings for residential customers and ComEd.com/BizSavings for business customers.