Here’s a question. How does a government entity increase sustainability and reduce their operating budgets at the same time?.. Was anyone’s first thought energy improvements?
Today’s local governments are challenged, among other issues, to reduce their carbon footprint and reduce operating budgets. Recently, the City of Oakland did both through a creative solution that managed to rank them in the top 10 of green and sustainable cities for the eighth year in a row.
As published in acrossamerica, the city renovated a 14- year old, two-level underground parking garage. Originally the garage installed 175-watt metal halide fixtures that were inefficient and very costly to operate. The city knew that by utilizing new lighting technology such as light emitting diode, or LEDs, and working with local incentive providers they could implement a capitally attractive and energy efficient solution.
ABM’s Electrical & Lighting Solutions group worked with the City’s Energy Engineers to determine the best solution for the garage. Rob Stanton, Senior Consultant, remembers, “We worked closely with the City of Oakland in order to design a solution that provided maximum energy savings while at the same time provided the required lighting levels needed by the City. They now have the capability to dim and in some cases turn off the LED light fixtures when an area is unoccupied. With the installation of occupancy sensors, the area returns to the required light level when someone enters the space.”
According to acrossamerica, the City decided to implement 180 new 80-watt LED fixtures strategically throughout the garage, and utilized local incentive programs to procure more than $43,000 in rebates. The improvements consume 80% less energy translating to an anticipated annual savings of $31,667.
The City of Oakland has again set an example for other local government entities. Not only do many energy improvements reduce carbon footprint, but the combination of incentives and reduction in consumption provides lower operating costs.