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California invests more than $600 million in healthy and energy-efficient schools

As part of the economic kickstart during COVID-19, California will be drawing over $600 million towards testing, adjusting and upgrading ventilation and water supply systems in schools. This will not only save energy and water, but also create a safe learning environment during the global COVID-19 pandemic and beyond, while giving an economic impulse to the hard-hit skilled labor market. Danish energy technology providers have solutions that fit the bill.

Retrofitting HVAC systems, implementing new filters to promote clean air, and changing the pipelines in schools are just some of the new technologies that California is looking to invest in with the new bill signed by Governor Gavin Newsom yesterday. The bill stimulates an outstanding business opportunity, for Danish stakeholders specializing in HVAC equipment, water conservation and energy technology, to benefit from a record high public funding. Cal-SMACNA anticipates that upwards of $600 million in energy efficiency funding will be made available over the next three years, creating a demand for energy and water efficiency technologies, both areas where Denmark has world-leading technologies, solutions, and competencies opening up for a great business opportunity for Danish companies to expand in the Californian market while promoting high-quality green jobs. 

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has created an urgent need for a healthy and safe school environment for California’s children and teachers. Meanwhile, underserved communities have been hit especially hard by the economic crisis and recent excessive weather events due to climate change, further spiking an already existing need to save energy and create high-quality skilled labor jobs. Addressing these issues, California has enacted the new bill, Assembly Bill 841, drawing hundreds of millions of dollars to invest in the School Energy Efficiency Stimulus Program. The bill calls for the testing, adjusting and upgrading of ventilation and water supply systems in schools, thereby saving energy, water and creating a safe learning environment. Danish energy technology providers have the desired solutions and the bill creates a great business opportunity for Danish companies. 

What does the bill include?

In the wake of the pandemic, the bill comes at a vital time when mustering all possible state resources towards investments in clean, breathable air is valuable to address public health. In extent, the bill jumpstarts energy-efficient retrofits making the air safer to breathe and water safer to drink in public schools. The efforts of the bill will save approximately 6 billion gallons of water per year, while protecting the health of students. Appropriately, it prioritizes schools in underserved neighborhoods and those near freeways and pollution-intensive facilities, while serving as a stimulus to local communities, providing jobs and investments within green energy and transport. This bill seeks to funds, repairs, and replaces the inefficient HVAC systems, as well as implement new filters to reduce the risk from both COVID-19 and wildfire smoke, sculpting a safe environment for the preparation of the return of students once schools re-open in the aft of COVID-19. This is all provided through the joint School Energy Efficiency Stimulus Program, which will be administered by the California Energy Commission and integrated into the existing energy efficiency programs of California’s large electricity and gas utilities.

Summing up, AB 841 will boost the economy in the hardest-hit regions of California, create a healthy and safe learning environment in California’s schools, and reduce energy and water consumption, allowing schools to save on utility bills and contribute to California’s ambitious climate goals.

We can help you!

Denmark has established a government-to-government cooperation with the state of California on water, energy, and climate. The Energy & Environment team at the Consulate General of Denmark in Silicon Valley is ready to help Danish stakeholders interested in learning more about the opportunities in the Californian market for energy and water efficiency technologies.

Please feel free to contact any of our experts or commercial advisors. Their contact information is found below.

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