The Drax Foundation, the corporate foundation of the Drax Group, reports success with a £4.5m scheme it launched last year to help schools become energy efficient.

It has supported the energy education charity Energy Sparks and the energy efficient lighting and controls specialists Goodlight to work with 148 schools, including in areas close to Drax’s UK sites, to reduce their energy bills and carbon emissions.

With support from the Drax Foundation, Energy Sparks gave 128 schools free access to its online energy management tool, education programme and support services. Similarly, foundation funding enabled Goodlight to kit out 20 schools with LED lighting and sensors.

Through working with Energy Sparks and Goodlight, the schools have saved a combined estimated total of £1.6m on their annual energy bills and reduced their carbon emissions by 1,684 tonnes.


The Drax Foundation will continue to finance both organisations throughout 2024, enabling them to work with and support many more schools. The Foundation is also funding the installation of solar panels for some of these schools. To date, one installation has been completed in Northampton, and it will complete two more installations in the Selby area over the next few months.

Drax Foundation’s work with Goodlight and Energy Sparks has been shortlisted for an award in the Community category in the British Renewable Energy Awards 2024.

Shona King, Head of Community at Drax Group, said: “We are proud that Drax Foundation has supported nearly 150 schools to save money on their energy bills and reduce their impact on the environment. We want to go even further this year, installing solar panels and LED lighting for more schools and helping them to engage their pupils in energy efficiency and actions to mitigate the impact of climate change.

“It’s important to us to help children start thinking about saving energy and reducing their carbon footprint from a young age as these issues are going to be increasingly important for them in the future.”

With support from the foundation, Goodlight worked with Kirk Sandall Junior School, Doncaster, to upgrade their lighting system to efficient LEDs, saving the school an estimated 20.85 tonnes of CO2 emissions, £11,694 on their annual energy bill and 38,498 kWh of electricity

Its executive headteacher Kathy Thompson said: “It’s so important that businesses support their communities and this initiative by the Drax Foundation is a really great way to help us save money, especially at the moment when energy costs and prices in general are so high. It also teaches pupils about the impact we have on our environment and how we can act responsibly to save energy.”