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News & Updates

BMIP Tenants Explore Energy Efficiency Options

Jun 18, 2014

101010-0133-(2).pngTenants of the Boston Marine Industrial Park, the BRA-owned business park in the South Boston Waterfront, gathered with BRA staff last week to learn about energy efficiency programs and opportunities for their businesses.

Energy efficiency has been an increasingly important priority for the City of Boston and the BRA in recent years, as the City aims to meet ambitious greenhouse emissions reduction goals. The BMIP's energy efficiency efforts are also related to the BRA's EcoDistricts planning initiative, which is exploring options for district energy options in the South Boston Waterfront neighborhood.

At the first BMIP energy efficiency meeting, tenants learned how they could save money by properly using efficiency resources.

Daniel Ohrenstein, PE, LEED AP BD+C explained building energy efficiency opportunities, cost savings, and incentive programs in Massachusetts.  Dan is a dedicated summer Fellow at the Boston Redevelopment Authority whose mission is to bolster the energy efficiency programs of tenants of the Marine Industrial Park.  He will be scheduling energy assessments this summer and providing financial analysis for project costs and benefits. 

Travis Sheehan, Eco Districts Fellow at the Boston Redevelopment Authority, explained the benefits of district energy systems (DES) which use combined heat and power (CHP).  CHP captures waste heat from electricity generation to produce steam.  The steam then is piped to heat buildings.  A DES provides reliable backup power in the event of a grid failure; stable voltage, frequency, and wave form; and can save energy customers on their bills through greater energy efficiency.

John Smegal of the US Department of Energy’s Industrial Assessment Centers (IAC) discussed the IAC program, which sends experts and graduate students to examine the production processes of small to mid-sized industrial manufacturers.  The experts at IAC then deliver free, detailed recommendations on how to improve the industrial process and save energy.

Terry Waldron of Waldron Engineering explained the design and benefits of Biogen Idec’s 5.4 MW CHP facility.  Mr. Waldron noted that the CHP facility stayed on during the blackout of 2013 and recouped a simple payback in 4.5 years—even without rebates or incentives.

Mark Stafford of National Grid recounted utility rebates and incentives available to energy customers from the Mass Save program.  Utility customers can get rebates on energy efficient equipment as well as receive rebates on design and construction costs on retrofits.  In other words, the energy company will help pay for you to save energy.

Brian Donovan, engineer at Harpoon Brewery, detailed the design and cost benefits of Harpoon’s CHP unit, which is small enough to fit in a standard shipping container.  The CHP unit provides 70% of Harpoon’s power throughout the year and covers 90% of process water heating needs annually.   It’s been a great investment for the brewery.

The BRA will work with individual BMIP tenants throughout the summer to develop energy efficiency strategies suitable for each business.

For more information about energy efficiency efforts in the BMIP, contact Daniel Ohrenstein, EDF Climate Corps Fellow/Intern, at [email protected].

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