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20% of Americans Attend School Daily -- Green Schools Matter

Building green would save an average school $100,000 each year in energy costs alone – enough to hire two additional full-time teachers, purchase 5,000 new textbooks, or buy 500 new computers.

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California Green Chemistry Initiative Fully 20% of Americans go to school every day. Too often, the schools they attend are unhealthy, inefficient and not as conducive to learning as they could be.

Green schools create a nurturing learning environment, decrease student and teacher absenteeism from respiratory and other illnesses, and provide models for teaching the world’s future leaders about sustainability to benefit communities for generations to come.

They create new hands-on learning opportunities for students.

And they save money through reduced water and energy bills.

A 2006 study sponsored by the American Federation of Teachers, the American Institute of Architects, the American Lung Association, the Federation of American Scientists and USGBC found that building green would save an average school $100,000 each year in energy costs alone – enough to hire two additional full-time teachers, purchase 5,000 new textbooks, or buy 500 new computers.

According to “Greening America’s Schools: Costs and Benefits, 2006,” it costs on average less than 2% more – about $3 extra per square foot – to build a green school rather than a conventional school. The payback occurs within one year based on energy savings alone.

For more information on green schools, including their benefits, resources for promoting green schools, and case studies of schools that have already gone green, visit

Edited by Carolyn Allen, owner/editor of California Green Solutions
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