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Carbon Reduction and Energy Efficiency in Schools

Being an energy efficient school can mean big savings on energy bills, provide real-life learning opportunities, as well as tackling climate change through cutting carbon emissions.  Many schools in Bath and North East Somerset are looking to improve the energy perfomance of their buildings and are using energy more efficiently; some are also promoting the benefits of energy efficiency to their local communities too. 

Schools Carbon Reduction Programme

The Council has resources to support schools in Bath and North East Somerset that are keen to be energy and resource efficient. Including:

    • In 2013 71 schools in the district received a bespoke energy survey report based on energy analysis, energy management and a site survey. The report includes action plans for caretakers, senior management and pupils to help them implement the recommendations in the report.
    • Guides and advice in implementing an energy management system 

Energy Surveys

Events were held throughout June 2013 to disseminate general findings of the surveys. The presentation from the event for senior schools staff is available from the menu to the right.

Heating Controls Project

The Energy Survey Project highlighted the large potential to save energy through better management of existing heating and hot water systems. In response, in  2014 the Council funded a project to make adjustments and provide training for the complex controls. The project reduced gas use by an average of 11% in Schools taking part.

Energy Management in Schools

Energy management is how a school protects itself from rising energy prices, engages pupils and staff, provides a comfortable space for learning and integrates this work into the curriculum.

Managing energy is just like managing any other aspect of an organisation, you need a process for keeping it in check. But it is different in that pupils, staff, teachers and governors can all be involved and energy management can offer exciting real life learning opportunities for your pupils. Energy management can bring big savings; an average secondary schools loses so much energy each year that they waste the equivalent to the salary of a newly qualified teacher!

See the report from the Carbon Trust

Read the Overview to Energy Management

Step by Step Energy Management

To assist in setting up and running your energy management programme in your school we have produced guides to each step of the way. These guides cover; Setting Up Your Energy Team, Reviewing The Energy Management Matrix, Writing Your Energy Policy, Monitoring and Targetting Energy Use, Writing and Implementing Your Action Plan and Energy Work in the Curriculum. These can be downloaded from the menu on the right.


Salix Finance might be suitable for projects where schools are looking to invest in energy effeciency measures.

Solar Panels

In 2013 Bath & North East Somerset Council issued a briefing note to answer schools questions and it covers some of the key practical things to consider when looking to install solar panels, including; making solar panels pay for the school, benefits to the school, signing leases and planning permission.

Eco Team and Eco Schools

Eco-Schools is an international award programme that guides schools on their sustainable journey, providing a simple framework to help make sustainability an integral part of school life. Eco-Schools can help enhance the curriculum and get the whole school united behind something important”

Central Energy Contract

The Council manages a central energy contract for schools, meaning schools pay a fair price for energy and have Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) meters installed on their energy supplies.  AMRs mean accurate billing and the ability for each school to view its half-hourly energy consumption online; a great tool for identifying energy saving opportunities. Details about joining the contact are on the Hub.

Further Sources of Support and Information

The Carbon Trust

Offer impartial expertise, guidance and resources on carbon reduction and have a long history of working with the public sector and schools.  The School Sector Overview (CTV019) provides guidance on anyalysing energy use and where to look for the best opportunties.  There is also an extensive range of free publications about specific technologies.

The National Framework for Sustainable Schools

Provides a roadmap by which those working and studying within the school sector can begin to reduce the emissions of greenhouse gases from schools and school related activity (still current, published in 2010 by DCSF).

Learning and Behaviour Support and Information


An international environmental award scheme for schools, rewarding and accrediting schools that have made a commitment to improve their environmental performance. Many schools in Bath & North East Somerset are registered on this is a free programme. If you would like support in getting started with Eco-Schools or moving on to your next award please contact Helen Peake at Resource Futures.  Download the Environmental Review Documents that Resource Futures have developed for Bath and North East Somerset primary pupils.

B&NES Eco-Schools Directory

A directory of organisations, groups and professionals that work with schools on sustainability, environmental and global citizenship related activities in the Bath and North East Somerset district.

The Pod

An excellent resource for teachers and pupils who want to make their school more sustainable, and is designed to support the Eco- Schools programme.

Carbon Detectives

Provides support and ideas for actions that your school can take to reduce their carbon footprint. It also provides tools to allow schools to monitor their progress and report their savings.

Generation Green

Helps to make your school more sustainable with free lesson plans and a fun website.

Food for Life Partnership

Teaching resources, case studies and  information on everything you need to know about the Food for Life programme.


The Director of Public Health Award for Schools

Early Years and Colleges recognises the work carried out by settings to make a real difference to the health and well-being of children and families in Bath and North East Somerset. The Award encourages settings to think about sustainability issues linked with maintaining a healthy weight and many involve their children and young people in activities particularly linked to active travel, cooking and growing food.

To find out more about the Award, go to the Director of Public Health Award webiste or contact,uk

Waste and Recycling

Bath & North East Somerset Council offers free activities and services to support learning about waste, recycling and composting.  See our web pages for information and advice about recycling and waste collections. Free compost bins are available on request (while stocks last).

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