Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board supports energy efficient boilers for Toledo School District

For immediate release

Centralia, (September 13, 2017) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board is pleased to announce it has approved a grant to help ensure that students and faculty at Toledo Elementary School have a warm and safe environment. The project will replace its obsolete, failing and inefficient elementary school boilers with energy efficient and reliable boilers.

The grant amount of $231,400.00 will be used to replace the 1995 boilers which currently operate at 75-80% efficiency and will be replaced with boilers that provide 85-96% thermal efficiency depending on how much heat is required. The School District will be leveraging the funding dollars with a Puget Sound Energy rebate program. The project is expected to begin June, 2018 and to be completed by September, 2018 but could occur earlier if necessary.

“In reviewing this application, the Funding Board members saw that there was a definite need for the boiler replacement. With the history of operational failure and the difficulty in finding replacement parts as parts are becoming or, are obsolete, the board recognized that the negative impacts could be not only to the school building, but to the education and environment for the children and faculty”, said Lori Schmitt, Weatherization Board Member. “Being able to use this funding along with the rebate will allow the School District to take the worry away.”

The Weatherization Board was formed as part of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December, 2020 and the second unit in December, 2025.

“A boiler failure could have interrupted the school year for our students,” said superintendent Chris Rust. “State emergency funds weren’t available for this project and local funds have been allocated to other projects. We’re grateful that the Weatherization Board grant allows us to replace the boilers and restore some peace of mind.”

The Toledo School District is a rural public school district that was founded in 1892 and serves approximately 750 students in grades kindergarten through grade 12. Four schools serve the needs of Toledo students where educators and administrators are grounded in the district motto “Each Child, Each Day, Each Classroom”.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards have been made for the past five years with the last payment due Dec. 31, 2023.  The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

For more information on the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards visit:

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