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Energy Savings Idea Discussion - Please Contribute

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Mike Loszach
(@mikeloszach)
Eminent Member
Joined: 9 months ago
Posts: 16
Topic starter  

With the rising energy costs, the Homewood-Flossmoor Park District would like to get your ideas and opinions on ways in which we can save on energy. Please share any ideas that you have for ways that we can save on energy below. Prizes may be offered for the best ideas that are shared!


   
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Mike Loszach
(@mikeloszach)
Eminent Member
Joined: 9 months ago
Posts: 16
Topic starter  

Would the HF Park District explore the possibility of the installation of Cisterns to help with Water Conservation? During my time at the Park District of Oak Park we started installing several of these. They now have five of these water reservoirs that they report save them 1,250,000 gallons of water & $84,000/year.

Some collect water from the splash pads & I believe others collect rain water from the roof and that water is used for irrigation or toilet flushing.

Perhaps this is something the agency would want to research further?

More info here: https://pdop.org/water-conservation/

And also a PDF attachment


   
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Mike Loszach
(@mikeloszach)
Eminent Member
Joined: 9 months ago
Posts: 16
Topic starter  

Does the Park District have energy efficient windows installed in our facilities? If not, would we consider upgrading these?

One energy-efficient strategy that the Park District of Oak Park took when creating their net zero CRC was the installation of triple pane windows. They report these windows as 25% more efficient than double pane windows & 50% more efficient than triple pane windows. 

The heating & cooling systems don't need to work as hard & it helps maintain a consistent year-round temperature with no cold pockets of air due to leakage. 


   
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CLesimple
(@clesimple)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 7
 

If the cisterns were not eye-pleasing, they could be painted. Either artistically or just to blend in with their surroundings. 


   
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(@srab)
Eminent Member Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 24
 

If we were to coordinate a schedule where facilities (that are able) worked from home for 1 or 2 days, this could save money. Themostats could be scheduled accordingly, lights would be off, etc. There is also the positive environmental impact of not driving to work.

Aside from that, other changes would be larger regarding infrastructure—things like updated faucets, more efficient toilets, and lighting elements.

The only thing I worry about when it comes to outdoor lighting and LEDs is the consideration of light pollution. LEDs are more efficient, but sometimes things get out of control with how much light is cast.


   
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(@srab)
Eminent Member Admin
Joined: 2 years ago
Posts: 24
 

@clesimple I don't think we should hide them, I think we should have a sign or information that explains what they are about and the benefits. We should point them out.


   
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CLesimple
(@clesimple)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 7
 

@srab Valid point. I don't find them unsightly, personally.


   
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(@mgianatasiohfparks-com)
Eminent Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 9
 

I met with a company a couple of weeks ago regarding something called Community Solar. Community Solar is essentially tapping into existing solar farms in the area (50 mile radius or so). We can continue to pursue that option. I can provide more info to anyone interested.

We could also consider installing solar panels in open spaces next to facilities. I have heard concerns about panels on rooftops possibly voiding warranties. Most of our facilities have some green space near them to stick some panels. Perhaps we could qualify for some sort of rebate or grant program for this.

I also worked at an agency that had some small wind turbines in certain parks to run electricity to pavilions and other park amenities. The downside is that they need to be inspected a couple times each year and it was costly. This was about 10 years ago so maybe things have changed.


   
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CLesimple
(@clesimple)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 7
 

I have a friend that owns Green Grease Environmental. They collect used cooking oil and many times will pay for it. I'm working on connecting them with Matt at Wiley's to see if they could benefit the park district.

https://green-grease.com/  

 


   
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(@dyanajayne)
Active Member
Joined: 8 months ago
Posts: 7
 

I agree with @srab with the working from home 1-2 days a week. It would allow us to save money on utilities and electricity, as well as being more green friendly to those who drive to work. 

 

I think we should look into Epact for paper and printing energy savings. Many other Park Districts use it. It would allow us to save paper, we wouldn't have to print off all Child-Info forms, adult info forms, swim forms, unless necessary. The staff members would have access to it through an app.


   
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