February 25, 2021
SACO — The Ecology School has raised $13.5 million toward its $14.1 million fundraising goal and it plans to cut the ribbon on Earth Day.
When completed, River Bend Farm will be one of the greenest environmental residential learning centers in the country, according to a school press release. With a 9,000 square-foot dormitory, 7,000 square-foot dining area, and 718 solar panels, which will create 105 percent net positive energy. The property is substantial in size and vision and represents the latest example of Maine’s — and the nation’s — progress toward a carbon neutral future.
“The new Ecology School campus is unlike anything that Maine has seen,” said Drew Dumsch, president/CEO and co-founder of The Ecology School. “It will be entirely self-sufficient and will provide a living and breathing example of what a sustainable future might look like.”
Supporters of The Ecology School include the Daniel E. Offutt III Charitable Trust, Jane’s Trust, and Quimby Family Foundation, Saco & Biddeford Savings, among others. In 2019, The Ecology School was awarded an $8.66 million loan from the USDA Rural Development’s Community Facilities Direct Loan and Guaranteed Loans program, the largest community facilities loan granted to an educational facility in Maine within the past decade. In addition, CEI provided $1.75 million in long-term financing.
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