The facilities -- 30 municipal, 15 school -- were selected based on an energy audit conducted by engineering firm MACTEC. The city estimates that the project will save it $17 million over 15 years, not to mention reduce its carbon footprint.
Among the buildings selected:
A nursing home
The Portland Exposition Building
Portland High School
All of Portland’s K-12 schools, police and fire stations and recreational facilities were audited in the process.
As part of the sustainability improvements, the city will switch from fuel oil to natural gas. Ameresco will also install a 2,000 watt solar array at the Portland Arts and Technology High School.
The rest of the list of recommendations from MACTEC:
More efficient lighting.
Energy management control systems.
Boiler plant upgrades.
Pipe and equipment insulation.
Solar water heaters.
Solar PV systems.
Laundry plant improvements.
As is becoming increasingly common in these arrangements, the City of Portland actually has no upfront capital expense for the project. Ameresco will take that on, and guarantee a minimum level of energy savings over the 15-year term of the contract (and presumably share a percentage of revenues from the project).
It will also help the city to apply for and secure additional funds from outside public and private sources.
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com