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PUSD Receives Two Leadership Awards for Green Efforts, Sustainability Solutions, and Zero Net Energy Projects

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For Immediate Release:

Thursday, November 1, 2018



Nicky Mora

District Communications and Public Relations

Pittsburg Unified School District

(925) 473-2427


Alan Glass

Energy Supervisor

Pittsburg Unified School District

(925) 473-2368


Photos of awards may be downloaded:



Pittsburg Unified School District Receives Two Leadership Awards for Green Efforts, Sustainability Solutions, and Zero Net Energy Projects


Pittsburg, CA…Thursday, November 1, 2018 – Staff representing Pittsburg Unified School District (PUSD) returned this week from the Green California School Summit in Pasadena, CA where the school district received two awards for green efforts, sustainability solutions, and Zero Net Energy projects. The awards received are the “2018 Green California Schools & Community Colleges Leadership Award” and the “2018 Zero Net Energy Green California Schools and Community Colleges Leadership Award.” Mr. Alan Glass, Energy Supervisor, Mr. Matt Belasco, Director, Maintenance, Operations, and Transportation, and Mr. Larry Scott, Director, Facilities and Information Technology accepted the awards on behalf of PUSD. The Green California Schools and Community Colleges Summit is an annual meeting of school stakeholders who share best practices, inspire new ideas, and continue to innovate, to make California schools greener.


“We are extremely honored to receive this recognition by the Green California Schools and Community Colleges,” said Dr. Janet Schulze, Superintendent, Pittsburg Unified School District. “Our Board of Education has a commitment to green practices in our policies and the team has done an outstanding job of continually finding ways to increase our sustainable practices. We want to model for our students the importance of green practices for today and tomorrow’s environment.”


These two awards recognize PUSD’s dedication and carefully planned efforts to lead the way with green practices in transportation, facilities, energy use, child nutrition, maintenance, and operations. During the 2017-2018 School Year, PUSD was the first school district in the Bay Area to convert sixteen school buses in its fleet to zero and low emissions vehicles. Thanks to Blue Bird and Roush Clean Tech, PUSD was able to purchase a new bus fleet with propane autogas (Neste MY Renewable Diesel) that is economical and allows the District to save money without sacrificing the safety of students. Neste MY Renewable Diesel is a low-carbon fuel produced from 100% renewable and sustainable raw materials. The fuel cuts greenhouse gas emissions by up to 80% and significantly reduces engine-out emissions, all while enhancing fleet performance. 


Besides the propane powered buses, the District also purchased two all-electric buses and six all-electric cars for its transportation fleet. Prior to switching to more energy-efficient buses, PUSD had not purchased a new bus in more than eighteen years.


Additionally, Pittsburg Unified School District is in the early stages of planning to build a Zero Net Energy School (ZNE), which will become the new Parkside Elementary School. It was because of this planning that PUSD was recognized and awarded the 2018 Zero Net Energy Green California Schools and Community Colleges Leadership Award.


PUSD’s Sustainability Programs and Efforts Also Include:


  • District awarded Green Ribbon School District with Gold Distinction from California Department of Education
  • Golden Bell Award for District’s Garden Program from California School Board Association
  • Board Policy establishing a Green School Operations and Sustainability policy
  • Solar arrays at 15 of the District’s 17 locations
  • 24 electric vehicle (EV) charging stations districtwide
  • New EV bus charging stations in the works through PG&E pilot program
  • Site Support Services Center acquired new beta solar panels over one-acre bioswale and 4 (10kW) wind generation units
  • Learning Center is being built at bioswale for PUSD students
  • All custodial cleaning products are green or green certified
  • Idle-free program to discourage idling vehicles at school sites
  • Farm-to-school fresh produce
  • Active gardens at all K-12 school sites
  • High percentage of recycle to waste ratio
  • Composting food waste at most school sites
  • Recycled water for irrigation at two school sites with third site planned 
  • Waterless urinals at all school sites and district facilities, each saving up to 40,000 gallons of water per year


About Pittsburg Unified School District:

Awarded the College Board’s Gaston Caperton Opportunity Honor Roll award in 2016 for expanding access to college, Pittsburg Unified School District (PUSD) is one of 130 school districts across the nation recognized for creating opportunities for traditionally underrepresented students. PUSD is a K-12 district serving the diverse community of Pittsburg, California. Founded in 1933, the school system is committed to providing an excellent opportunity for all students to learn. Comprised of eight elementary schools, three junior high schools, one comprehensive high school, one alternative education high school, an adult school, independent study options, and a preschool program, the school district serves more than 11,500 students. PUSD is located in the San Francisco Bay Area, fifty minutes outside of downtown San Francisco.