Q&A with Christos Chrysiliou, LAUSD Director of Architectural and Engineering
LAW: Has the commitment to building and renovating schools in an energy efficient manner evolved over time?
CC: Yes, it was evolved through better building practices and as energy costs increased. Also, through new construction and modernization programs. The High Performance School Initiative helped drive energy efficiency in schools.
LAW: What are the compelling reasons why energy efficient schools are an important part of school reform efforts?
CC: It creates better and healthier learning environments. There is a direct correlation between healthy buildings and healthy occupants, as it is the air they breathe, and the spaces they use for different activities.
LAW: Are energy efficiency initiatives given equal weight across the entire District?
CC: Yes they are in some respect but mainly they are prioritized on several factors such as the buildings with the highest energy usage.
LAW: How do you manage the balance between of program goals district-wide?
CC: By focusing on specific goals and objectives such as health and safety for our students and staff.
LAW: Is performance measurement and verification a particular challenge? Are you able to customize M&V based on the specific regional conditions?
CC: It is a challenge but with our team and industries knowledge and expertise we can overcome these challenges.
LAW: How do the specific imperatives of Proposition 39 play a role in your energy efficiency work? What percentage of your projects comprises existing school renovations?
CC: Most of our efficiency projects are focused on existing sites. Certain requirements affect the selection for different types of efficiencies in order to meet the required savings to investment ratio.
LAW: In what ways is Prop. 39 funding a value-add or supplement to your energy efficiency agenda? How does the availability of funding impact the District’s work?
CC: Prop. 39 is great addition to our District Energy Efficiency program. It helps not only to create energy efficiency projects but also to replace antiquated systems and create healthier learning environments. Funding is one of the drivers for Energy Efficiency projects.