Students of Cēsis help tackle climate change

For the second year in a row, the students of the Cēsis Pastariņš Primary School are enjoying the benefits of attending a sustainable, energy efficient school.

Upon completing the school’s renovation project, its CO2 output was cut by 57,182 tonnes, and the annual heating consumption shrunk to 27.55 kWh/m2 and below.

In 2016, the Cēsis municipality and its’ chairman Mr Jānis Rozenbergs joined the Global Covenant of Mayors for Climate & Energy, committing to reducing global and local CO2 levels. As of right now, the city has developed and is in the process of implementing an Energy efficiency plan for the years 2016-2020, which is handled by a dedicated specialist or Energy manager.

Although all of the schools in Cēsis are properly insulated, only the Pastariņš Primary has been deemed low-energy by EU standards thus far. This was made possible by Cēsis taking part in the Emission Allowances Auction Instrument (Latvian: EKII) which allowed to renovate more than 2400 m2 of the school’s building. The renovation included the insulation of the basement and the first floor, as well as the building’s facade and attic, replacement of the windows, installation of a brand new ventilation and water heating system. The renovation was done under the supervision of a building energy efficiency expert.

Before the renovation, classrooms had insufficient ventilation and lighting was ensured by old-school daylight panels with poor efficiency. Now the children are enjoying fresh air adhering to CO2 standards and energy efficient lighting.

One of the reasons this school was chosen for the project is that the building is the oldest one on the street it is located on. It was built in late 19th century as army barracks for the Russian Empire, but has served as a school since 1907. Another deciding factor was that the school had already received the Green flag and was an active Eco-school, with its pupils taking part in managing and saving resources by learning about human impact on the climate and the ways to tackle climate change with everyday action.

The Cēsis Pastariņš Primary School renovation project was 78,9% funded by EKII.