5 P.E.I. schools converting to biomass energy for heating

Five P.E.I. schools are being retrofitted this summer for biomass heating units.

Biomass energy is produced from renewable, biological sources such as plants, wood and waste.

The five schools converting to biomass fuel for heat are West Royalty Elementary, Queen Elizabeth Elementary, Westwood Primary, M.E. Callaghan Intermediate and Kensington Intermediate Senior High School, said Brad Trivers, minister of education and environment.

“It is a tangible way that we are mitigating climate change and moving off of fuel oil using a renewable resource that we can grow right here in the province,” Trivers said.

He said the change will have positive environmental impacts and said West Royalty Elementary alone will save 97,000 litres of fuel oil annually.

“About 260 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions,” Trivers said.

Teaching opportunity

He is hoping to have all the schools converted by the end of the summer and ready to go this fall.

Trivers said the heat conversion could be a teaching moment for students attending the schools.

“This will be a great opportunity to talk about renewable energy, and greenhouse gas emissions, and climate change and the action — the real action that we’re taking on the Island to really mitigate those greenhouse gas emissions,” Trivers said.

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