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Lime Energy Saves PA County $300k in Energy Costs

Lime Energy has completed a large-scale energy retrofit project expected to save 75 municipality-owned facilities in Allegheny County, Pa., more than $300,000 in annual energy costs.

In addition, the efficiency measures are expected to save the county about 2.3 million kWh of electricity and 30,000 gallons of water annually, Lime Energy says.

After winning the Allegheny County Energy Program for Municipalities contract in 2010, Lime Energy conducted general grade audits of 104 of the 129 municipal facilities in the county. Seventy-five of the county’s 129 municipalities then passed resolutions to participate in the program, the largest-scale energy efficiency initiative Allegheny County has ever undertaken.

Lime Energy installed more than 16,000 individual energy conservation measures in 75 buildings. These included lighting retrofits, automatic control installations, domestic water upgrades, hot water tank retrofits and building weatherization improvements. In one upgrade, Lime Energy replaced outdated, 400W HID fixtures with updated energy-efficient lighting (pictured).

The project was funded in part by a $2 million Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant, managed by the US Department of Energy, and a $400,000 grant from the R.K. Mellon Foundation. Local energy service providers Duquesne Light and West Penn Power offered rebate incentives for the lighting phase to further offset retrofit project costs.

In May, Lime Energy became a pre-approved contractor for the NSTAR Municipal Program, which gives Massachusetts municipalities in the utility’s service territory incentives to make energy efficiency improvements. The program aims to retrofit existing electrical and mechanical systems that are outdated or inefficient.

Meanwhile, in an example of a municipal energy retrofit turned “disaster,” it recently emerged that while the city of Toronto spent $21.1 million retrofitting 89 arenas and more than 50 community centers and pools, the city doesn’t know if the energy efficiency measures produced any real cost savings.

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