Tags:FROM THE NC DEPT of COMMERCE (full release)
North Carolina’s Utility Savings Initiative saved the state’s taxpayers more than $82.8 million in utility costs in the last fiscal year and avoided emitting more than 250,779 metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, according to a report released today by the North Carolina Energy Office. Since the Utility Savings Initiative was launched in 2003, the state has avoided more than $417 million while investing $11.5 million into utility savings improvements in North Carolina government and university facilities.
“The return on our investment in resource-saving efforts continues to grow and that means we are more efficient and stretching precious taxpayer dollars even further,” said Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco. “The Utility Savings Initiative allows us to not just save tax dollars but protects and preserves our environment.”
The Utility Savings Initiative was an outgrowth of the 2002 Governor’s Commission to Promote Government Efficiency and Savings on State Spending. It is a statewide program to cut utility spending and use in public buildings. State law requires that per square-foot utility (electricity and water) consumption be cut by 20 percent by the end of 2010 and by 30 percent by the end of 2015 – based on utility use for the 2002-03 fiscal year. The report is based on submissions from 15 state agencies and 21 University of North Carolina institutions.
The Energy Office assists agencies in managing their utility bills through a variety of programs including:
Energy Management Diploma Certificate program – This course is offered free to all state agency employees and provides a comprehensive, hands-on practical energy management education.
Performance Contracting – This program offers state and local agencies a way to finance energy improvements and upgrades with the savings from those improvements.
Strategic Energy Plans – Providing agencies with the resources and assistance to evaluate their current energy use, project future utility needs and develop plans to meet goals in the most cost efficient manner.
Key findings in the report, submitted to the General Assembly, include:
$62.6 million in avoided energy costs in the 2010-11 fiscal year and cutting energy use by 18% percent per square foot of space. Energy costs during the same period grew by 44 percent.
$20.3 million in avoided water costs in 2010-11 fiscal year were achieved, while costs per gallon increased by 92 percent. Savings, based on the 2002-03 fiscal year are 33 percent – exceeding the mandated 2015 goal.
250,799 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions avoided in the last fiscal year– the equivalent of exhaust from 49,176 automobiles or 31,272 homes. Since the start of the program, 1.2 million metric tons of emissions have been avoided.
$417 million in overall savings since the program was launched in 2002-03.
A copy of the full report can be found on the N.C. Energy Office’s Utility Savings Initiative website: www.nccommerce.com/energy/utility-savings-initiative.Read the full article