Energy Roundup: New Sources ofPower and Energy Efficiency

By Consulting Specifying Engineer Staff June 16, 2005

• Northern Power Systems , Waitsfield, Vt., a subsidiary of Distributed Energy Systems Corp, has entered into an agreement to design, engineer and construct a 400-kW solar power system at a 429,000-sq.-ft. distribution center in southern California owned by footwear maker Timberland. The 401.8-kW PV system will be installed on a new “TruckPort” steel mounting structure next to the warehouse, leveraging an unused area of the facility’s truck yard by providing storage space for the facility as well as shaded parking for employees.

• New Energy Capital Corp ., Waltham, Mass., has teamed with Energy and Power Solutions, Inc ., to finance three cogeneration facilities at large food processing plants—one in Southern California and two in Massachusetts. Each project consists of a two-megawatt cogeneration facility. The facilities will provide electricity and thermal energy to the dairy food processing operations.

• GE Energy has announced that its wind turbine technology has been selected for projects at six sites in the Massif Central region of southern France. Together, the projects will add 57 megawatts of wind-generated electrical capacity to the country’s energy mix, increasing France’s current installed wind capacity by nearly 15%.

• Alameda County (Calif.) Board of Supervisors , as part of its Earth Day celebration, dedicated 1.1 megawatts of new solar arrays, located at facilities throughout the county. The county boasts that it is home to the largest single rooftop solar array in the nation, and its solar electric systems provide a total of 2.3 megawatts—enough to power over 2,200 homes during the day.

• The U.S. Dept. of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory conclude that over $15 billion invested in energy efficiency projects installed by energy services companies (ESCOs) at U.S. public and institutional facilities since 1990 has provided significant value to these customers. The researchers analyzed the performance of about 1,000 public/institutional projects representing about $2.5 billion in investment and estimated net economic benefits of over $1.7 billion in reduced energy and operational cost savings.

• Capstone Turbine , Los Angeles, has announced a follow-on order from its distributor in France for 2.8 megawatts of its 30-kW biogas-fueled microturbine products, its second major order from its Paris-based energy systems distributor.

• The Recycling Energy Council (REC) , Des Plaines, Ill., a public-private cooperative formed to promote combined heat and power (CHP) is applauding a five-year renewal of collaborative efforts between industry and government to advance CHP technologies by removing unnecessary regulatory and institutional barriers. The compact is a voluntary, collaborative effort among the CHP industry, the U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).