Electrical Industry Groups Join to Push for Transformer Efficiency


The nation’s investor—and municipally owned electric utilities—have joined with environmental and energy-efficiency organizations to recommend significantly higher efficiency standards for the estimated 41 million distribution transformers now serving the electricity system, according to a February release from the Edison Electric Institute .

Once in place following a gradual phase-in, the transformers are expected to save 26 billion kilowatt-hours annually, or roughly equivalent to the electricity used by 2.3 million U.S. households in 2005. That will in turn reduce annual emissions from electric power plants by 15 million metric tons, about equal to the average annual emissions of 2.7 million automobiles.

The proposal for higher efficiency standards marks the first-ever agreement on appliance standards from America’s investor-owned and public-power electric utilities and major energy efficiency and environmental groups. The recommendations were made jointly to the U.S. Dept. of Energy by the Edison Electric Institute and the American Public Power Association, representing the utilities, and the Natural Resources Defense Council, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, the Alliance to Save Energy, Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships and the Appliance Standards Awareness Project.

The announcement was made during the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners' (NARUC) Annual Winter Committee Meetings. The agreement comes at a time when DOE is evaluating the efficiency of liquid-filled transformers, the metal boxes or cylinders found on utility poles across the United States that serve the crucial function of reducing voltage to the levels needed to provide electricity to homes and businesses.

In 2006, DOE proposed new efficiency standards for these transformers, but concerned efficiency and environmental groups believed those standards did not take full advantage of current technology. The result was an unprecedented collaboration with the utility groups that led to the recommendation to the DOE announced today. The Department is expected to issue its final decision on transformer efficiency by this September. Representatives of these groups praised the collaborative effort and the strong message it sends about the importance of energy efficiency in all phases of the electricity production and delivery cycle.

No comments
Consulting-Specifying Engineer's Product of the Year (POY) contest is the premier award for new products in the HVAC, fire, electrical, and...
Consulting-Specifying Engineer magazine is dedicated to encouraging and recognizing the most talented young individuals...
The MEP Giants program lists the top mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection engineering firms in the United States.
Emergency lighting; NFPA 3 and 4; Integrated building systems; Smart lighting, HVAC design
Designing for energy efficiency; Understanding and applying NFPA 101 for mission critical facilities; Integrating commissioning and testing for fire alarm systems; Optimizing unitary pumping solutions
Economics of HVAC systems; NFPA 110-2016; Designing and choosing modular data centers
Tying a microgrid to the smart grid; Paralleling generator systems; Previewing NEC 2017 changes
Driving motor efficiency; Preventing Arc Flash in mission critical facilities; Integrating alternative power and existing electrical systems
Putting COPS into context; Designing medium-voltage electrical systems; Planning and designing resilient, efficient data centers; The nine steps of designing generator fuel systems
As brand protection manager for Eaton’s Electrical Sector, Tom Grace oversees counterfeit awareness...
Amara Rozgus is chief editor and content manager of Consulting-Specifier Engineer magazine.
IEEE power industry experts bring their combined experience in the electrical power industry...
Michael Heinsdorf, P.E., LEED AP, CDT is an Engineering Specification Writer at ARCOM MasterSpec.
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
click me