University Expected to Save $650K During First Year of Johnson Controls Contract

October 23, 2017

Johnson Controls will continue a 20-year relationship with Colorado State University-Pueblo (CSU-Pueblo) through a recent contract that enhances sustainability efforts through an improved infrastructure and a reduction in energy demands across the 278-acre campus, without capital expenditures. In September 2016, the $12.5 million contract was signed between CSU-Pueblo and Johnson Controls. The project addresses deferred maintenance, upgrades to existing equipment and systems and energy improvements over the next several years. Major elements include HVAC improvements, peak-shaving generators with distributed energy storage (battery storage), lighting improvements, water savings improvements, utility rate change and reduction. Engineers from the Colorado Energy Office provided collaborative guidance and consultative review of the Investment Grade Audit. 

“Limited state funding requires that we look to innovative, alternative funding sources to improve our campus,” says Karl Spiecker, CSU-Pueblo’s vice president for finance and administration. “The Johnson Controls energy performance contract will enable us to reduce our energy consumption and invest in our infrastructure without diverting financial resources from other university needs. 

“The Johnson Controls energy performance contract will enable us to reduce our energy consumption and invest in our infrastructure without diverting financial resources from other university needs.” 

Through the energy performance contract, the annual utility and operational savings of approximately $650,000 are guaranteed to cover the costs of the work. Annually, the project is expected to decrease utility consumption by 21.8 percent for electrical consumption, 27.2 percent for electrical demand, 5.6 percent for natural gas and 5.5 percent for water. It will have a positive impact on the environment and enhance the campus’ sustainability efforts. 

“We’ve had a long, successful history with the university,” says Rowena Adams, Colorado solutions account executive with Johnson Controls. “We have a partnership approach, focused on creating an amazing environment for students and staff. That joint focus has allowed us to develop truly innovative projects.” 

One of the more innovative aspects is the design of a Distributed Energy Storage (DES) system that works in parallel with two new natural gas peak-shaving generators to shed campus peak demand throughout the year. The DES system is 250 kW, 250 kWh integrated package, designed to work in conjunction with generators. The generators will include noise mitigation strategies and the system can be isolated from an existing solar photovoltaic field, owned by a third-party provider via a private-public partnership arrangement. Johnson Controls will also work with CSU-Pueblo and the electrical provider to integrate three separately metered residence halls into the campus primary electrical meter to reduce peak demand as well as leverage a lower electrical rate tariff. 

The improvements, which will encompass 20 buildings (1,099,594 square feet) across the campus, are expected to be complete in February 2018.

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