WASHINGTON — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recognized three facilities with the Energy Star Combined Heat and Power (CHP) Award for superior performance of their CHP systems. CHP captures the heat produced when electricity is generated and utilizes that heat — which would otherwise be wasted — to efficiently provide space heating, cooling, hot water, and steam for commercial, institutional, and industrial use.
The CHP awards were presented to:
• Bowdoin College, Brunswick, Maine
• Pepco Energy Systems, Atlantic City, New Jersey
• Thermal Energy Corp. (TECO), Houston
Bowdoin College installed its CHP system to help achieve its goal of cutting greenhouse gas emissions and achieving carbon neutrality. The system provides space heating and hot water heating for 56 buildings totaling 1.4 million square feet. Bowdoin College reports that it saves $138,000 a year with its system.
Pepco Energy Systems’ Midtown Thermal Control Center uses the heat from electricity generation to provide space heating and cooling to buildings through an energy system that serves Atlantic City’s tourist district. The system also supplies efficiently produced electricity to the grid, with fewer emissions of carbon dioxide and other air pollutants than conventional grid-supplied electricity.
CHP is instrumental to TECO’s sustainability strategy, which seeks to reduce emissions and ensure continuous heating and cooling to the Texas Medical Center’s 19.3 million square feet in the world’s largest medical complex. TECO believes that the best sustainability efforts reduce emissions by maximizing the efficiency of converting fuel to useful energy. TECO reports savings of $6-12 million annually.
These CHP systems achieved operating efficiencies of 68 to 86 percent, much higher than the efficiency of separate production of electricity and thermal energy (typically less than 50 percent). Based on this comparison, the CHP systems avoid carbon pollution equal to that from the generation of electricity used by more than 6,700 homes.
The EPA’s CHP Partnership is a voluntary program that seeks to reduce the environmental impact of power generation by promoting the use of cost-effective CHP. The partnership works closely with energy users, the CHP industry, state and local governments, and other clean energy stakeholders to facilitate the development of new CHP projects and to promote their environmental and economic benefits.
For more information about the CHP Partnership, visit http://epa.gov/chp/.
For more information about the Energy Star CHP awards, visit http://epa.gov/chp/awards/winners.html.
Publication date: 7/13/2015