Energy Savings Performance Contracts Unlock Deep Savings

September 1, 2015 By Carl Weinschenk

NAS-OceanaEnergy Savings Performance Contracts (ESPC) are especially attractive to funding-limited governmental bodies because they are financed via savings on energy and water. RMI and the U.S. General Services Administration has conducted a study of these projects and provided best practices.

The best practices include setting aggressive long-term goals; engaging and collaborating with diverse stakeholders; establishing a support system; starting with a clean sheet and a beginner’s mind set; using an iterative, holistic design process and incorporating feedback and ongoing involvement, according to GreenBiz.

These and other approaches are highlighted in a report by RMI-GSA entitled “Deep Energy Retrofits Using Energy Savings Performance Contracts: Success Stories.” One of the case study subjects is a deep energy retrofit at The Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana in Virginia Beach, VA. It started in 2002 and is set for completion next year. It cut energy use by more than 40 percent in more than 100 buildings. The key energy conservation measures (ECM) included steam and chiller-plant decentralization; high-efficiency HVAC equipment; use of renewables including solar thermal and ground-source heat pump (GSHP) with effluent heat rejection; digital controls with more than 18,000 measurement points; more than 40,000 lighting retrofits and water conservation steps taken on more than 10,000 fixtures.

In April, The U.S. Department of Energy released a request for proposals for ESPCs at federal sites worldwide. The goal was to award indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity (IDIQ) contracts to multiple vendors with a total contract ceiling of $55 billion.

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