On February 22, 2015, Elk Lake School District and the Susquehanna County Career & Technical Center (SCCTC) officially turned on four brand new natural gas boilers. These high efficient boilers will replace 7 really old, antiquated oil boilers. The output from these four boilers is enough to heat the entire complex which includes kindergarten through 12th grade and the SCCTC. The conversion to natural gas boilers is the conclusion of a $5.4 million energy efficiency project.
During the 2012-13 academic school years, Elk Lake School District paid approximately $382,100 for oil and the SCCTC paid $44,700. Last year, the district paid proximately$338,000 and the SCCTC paid 45,000.
Here are some pictures from inside the boiler room at Elk Lake:
This year the district and SCCTC expects to save $58,000, after accounting for the use of propane until the natural gas service line was installed. Next year the district expects over $110,000 in savings after a full year of running the boilers on clean burning natural gas.
“This project will save the taxpayers significant money over the coming years,” says Ken Cuomo, Elk Lake School District Superintendent. “The school is already benefiting financially from natural gas wells on the property and its relationships with the natural gas industry. It’s great our facility can utilize this tremendous resource another way, especially during this long cold winter!”
Despite having a well on the property, Elk Lake School District could not utilize the natural gas until a distribution system was installed. Over the past few months Leatherstocking Gas Corporation installed a two plus mile distribution line from Church Compressor station, operated by Williams. This line delivers natural gas directly to the school district. More importantly, it will open up the rural community it passes through to natural gas service.
“Delivering gas to the school district was priority one,” says Mike German, President and CEO of Corning Natural Gas Corporation and Leatherstocking Gas Company.” Finding a large user, an anchor customer is important to establishing a local distribution system. A large user will allow us to invest money into the gate station, distribution infrastructure and metering equipment. We expect 20 – 30 additional residential customers to connect into this line come spring time with more to follow soon after.”
Elk Lake High School and SCCTC isn’t the first school system in Susquehanna County to benefit from natural gas service. In 2013, Montrose high school also connected to Leatherstocking Gas Company’s distribution line.