Facility Assessments, Energy Efficiency Audits
Independent Energy Consultants employs a number of practical means to lower energy costs in commercial and industrial facilities. We begin with low or no-cost initiatives to determine your best and worst performing facilities. For inefficient facilities, Independent Energy Consultants will then progress through a series of logical steps to identify cost saving measures that provide rapid paybacks.
The steps shown below are typical of the services we offer for commercial and industrial customers wanting to reduce their energy costs and consumption.
Sample case histories of our work can be found here.
Utility Bill Review:
The first step in virtually any attempt to reduce your energy and cost consumption should be a thorough review of your historical utility bills. These bills provide utility tariff information and help identify a client's energy load profile. This information can help spot abnormalities and will serve as the basis for additional reviews. Learn more about our Utility Bill Audits & Energy Accounting services.
Independent Energy Consultants is a certified Curtailment Service Provider (CSP) in the PJM electrical grid. As a CSP we can help customers identify and manage their energy consumption during periods of peak usage and/or system emergencies. By voluntarily reducing your energy consumption during such times, you are able to earn a revenue stream from PJM. Participation in the Demand Response program requires that you have a CSP to coordinate events with PJM. Independent Energy Consultants will watch the market prices, alert you when savings opportunities exist and coordinate payment from PJM. Contact us to learn more about this program and whether or not it is right for your company.
Power Factor Penalty and Correction Analysis:
Power Factor is a measure of how efficiently you use electricity. For example, if your facility operates with a Power Factor of 85%, you can think of that as 85% of the electricity you pay for is being converted into useful work, and the remaining 15% is paid for, but is being wasted usually in the form of heat. Most utility companies penalize commercial and industrial customers for operating with low power factors. To learn if you are being penalized, what it is costing you, and how much of your electrical system capacity can be freed up, complete the power factor analysis request form. Independent Energy Consultants will show you how to improve your Power Factor and provide a cost/benefit analysis of the same. Here is an example of the cost/benefit of performing power factor correction.
A Certified Energy Manager (CEM) from Independent Energy Consultants will walk through your facility to examine non-production areas of energy consumption such as lighting, steam, compressed air, HVAC, etc. We will examine the building envelope and all mechanical and electrical systems. At the end of the walk-through, we will discuss our findings and you will receive a report detailing each possible Energy Conservation Measure (ECM). The report will also include a cost/benefit estimate for possible projects. Our audit recommendations will follow an integrated approach because one change effects other downstream decisions. Our recommended sequence for implementing ECMs is:
- Lighting upgrades or retrofits
- Power Factor improvements
- Building envelope
- Load reductions
- Distribution systems
- Plant upgrades
Cost Avoidance Program:
If you have retained a vendor to perform an energy efficiency improvement project, ask Independent Energy Consultants to provide independent verification that the ECM is producing the expected results. Before proceeding with any conservation project, you should obtain an accurate assessment of your current energy use and determine what influences that consumption. If this is not done beforehand, you can expect difficulties when attempting to determine future energy reductions and savings. Also, if you have signed a Performance Contract and/or obtained an energy loan or grant, this verification may be required. See our Utility Bill Audits & Energy Accounting page for more information about cost avoidance verification.
Request for Proposal:
After reviewing our Audit Report you may decide to proceed with an RFP for projects that meet your financial criteria. Independent Energy Consultants can assist with the preparation of an RFP and the review and selection of a qualified contractor.
For clients who are interested in minimizing or eliminating up-front costs of paying for an energy efficiency project, we can help you obtain financing. A properly structured lease can provide immediate positive cash flow, where the savings on your utility bill more than offset your project lease payments. Then at the end of your lease, you will own the equipment and receive all of the energy cost savings. We can also assist our clients in accessing federal, state and utility grants and/or low-cost loans that are reserved to fund energy efficiency projects.
For more information about energy efficiency audits and facility assessments, contact Independent Energy Consultants.