MWRD energy-reduction program leads to massive savings for taxpayers
EnerNOC recently presented a check for $1.09 million to the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago Board of Commissioners to illustrate the amount of energy savings it has accrued through the 2014-15 PJM electric grid electricity curtailment program.
Sept. 16, 2015 -- EnerNOC, a provider of cloud-based energy intelligence software and services, recently presented a check for $1.09 million to the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District (MWRD) of Greater Chicago Board of Commissioners to illustrate the amount of energy savings the agency accrued through the 2014-15 PJM electric grid electricity curtailment program. EnerNOC Regional Manager Phil Schrieber presented the check to MWRD President Mariyana Spyropoulos, Vice President Barbara McGowan and Executive Director David St. Pierre.
MWRD curtailed 29.5 megawatts, resulting in the payment for the energy curtailment program that ran from June 1, 2014 through May 31, 2015. In order to meet program requirement and its commitment to savings, the District was on call for emergency load curtailment during the program period and participated in a one-hour mandatory test in September 2014 to prove that it can curtail the required reduction in electricity and meet its obligation.
"Energy curtailment at our facilities aligns with our district goals to become energy neutral within the next decade by capturing renewable energy from our own processes," said Spyropoulos. "Just as we no longer view sewage as a waste product, but as a resource that can be recovered and reused, we also acknowledge there are significant amounts of energy savings in the way we run our plants. We know that when it rains, our facilities have to work overtime, but in between the deluges, we discovered new ways to be resourceful, cut our energy demands and put more money back in the hands of taxpayers."
EnerNOC was chosen to work with MWRD after its proposal was accepted through a competitive procurement process. The company reviewed the District's operations and proposed a curtailment strategy that maximized MWRD returns from the program. In addition, EnerNOC installed its real-time electric monitoring at six of the treatment plants to enable visibility and management of the District's participation in the load curtailment program. The company's proposal for participation in the demand response program was $38,950 per megawatt-year for paid capacity.
|Phil Schrieber (second from left) presented a check of $1.09 million to MWRD officials, including Vice President Barbara McGowan (from left), Executive Director David St. Pierre and President Mariyana Spyropoulos.|
MWRD again participated in a one-hour mandatory test on June 4, 2015, for the program year of June 1, 2015 through May 31, 2016, during which time it successfully curtailed 50.3 megawatts. This savings will result in quarterly payments in 2015 and 2016 of approximately $1.87 million total. This savings represents a sharp reduction in the amount of energy used by the District, according to the scheduled capacity at peak demand periods. One megawatt of electricity, for example, can power between 750 and 1,000 homes.
Since 1997, MWRD has participated in various curtailment programs. Through voluntary curtailments by the District and other participants, the curtailment providers have been able to defer the need for additional generating capacity necessary to meet the very short-lived peak demands expected during the summer months. Due to participation in these programs, it has been compensated a cumulative savings of $8 million since 1997.
Utilities have to provide enough energy to provide sufficient power on the warmest day of the year. The savings is calculated by multiplying the amount of megawatts reduced with the value of the energy as determined by PJM's capacity market. Likewise, the majority of energy used by MWRD facilities is electrical. To meet these savings, all facility operators have procedures they follow to reduce electrical energy consumption. These procedures include a list of equipment that could be shut down without sacrificing operations while avoiding any flooding concerns.