It isn't an easy feat. A milestone no other city in Salt River Project territory has ever reached, until now. SRP launched its Business Rebates in 2009 and the City of Mesa is the first municipality ever to earn the maximum of $300,000 annually in energy-efficient rebate incentives.
"The City of Mesa has been a strong partner of SRP's for a very long time and one of our most-involved municipal partners," said Brian Bednar, SRP strategic energy manager. "It took tremendous effort and commitment to implement the multitude of energy-efficient upgrades completed by the City. We applaud and celebrate all of their incredible achievements. It exemplifies the City's commitment to support the broader health of the electric grid, while making important investments for their residents that will continue to pay off for years to come."
"This is an exciting accomplishment and I'm proud of the wise strategies being used by our City of Mesa departments, to reduce environmental impact and create efficiencies for our residents," said Mesa Mayor John Giles. "We're grateful for the supportive and collaborative partnership with SRP, and we will continue to look for innovative ways to reach our Climate Action Plan goals."
With more than half-a-million people living in the second-largest city in the Phoenix-metropolitan area, Mesa is focused on sustainability and Climate Action. Participating in SRP's Business Rebate program is beneficial, both financially and environmentally, and in perfect alignment with the City leaders' vision for the future.
"We are all excited about this huge achievement because it brings Mesa closer to our goal of becoming a carbon neutral community by 2050. A key pathway to achieve carbon neutrality is to reduce energy use as much as possible and use clean renewable energy," said Laura Hyneman, City of Mesa deputy director of Environmental and Sustainability, "It's been a mutually beneficial partnership because it supports SRP's Sustainability Goals and the City of Mesa's Climate Action Plan. In addition, our Energy Resources department and SRP continue to add significant amounts of clean, renewable energy to our residents."
For Mesa, the "best part" of hitting the milestone for the community they serve is on-going energy savings and carbon reduction. Here's how they did it.
Greenfield Water Reclamation Plant (GWRP) Variable Frequency Drives (VFD)
GWRP is one of the largest and newest "end-of-the-line" water reclamation plants in the Phoenix-metro area. The sewage treatment plant is running greener and better than ever now that new VFDs were installed. The VFDs run the plant's equipment at an optimal setting, which saves energy and extends the life of equipment. Without VFDs the pumps at the facility run at 100 percent regardless of the amount of water coming into the facility to be processed. VFDs enable the plant operators to adjust the speed of the pumps to save energy. The upgrades are part of a larger facility expansion, which is run by the City of Mesa, but also includes the Towns of Gilbert and Queen Creek.
"The energy saved at the Water Reclamation Plant exemplifies the water-energy nexus. By taking steps to operate efficiently, the plant avoids using more than 1 million gallons of water in electricity generation," said Chris Brady, Mesa City Manager.
Energy Savings: 2.4 million kilowatt hours (kWh) annually, which is enough energy to power more than 270 homes (based on the average U.S. household consumption of 10,715 kWh per year).
Reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions: 1,701 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e)
SRP Business Rebate received: $261,000
Falcon Field Airport LED Lighting Upgrade
The Falcon Field Airport is much brighter and more energy efficient these days thanks to SRP's LED lighting rebates. The City of Mesa replaced inefficient interior and exterior light fixtures with efficient LED bulbs at 66 hangars and the Arizona Museum of Natural History. The new lights will provide enough energy savings to power 18 homes per year and has a simple payback of less than five years.
Energy Savings: 196,000 kWh
Reduction of GHS emissions: 132 metric tons of CO2e
SRP Business Rebate received: $7,100
AZ Labs Central Plant
The researchers and engineers at AZ Labs now have a much cooler place to work and the City of Mesa will save money for years to come with new high-efficiency chillers, cooling towers, pumps and VFDs for the pumps and cooling tower fans.
Energy Savings: 170,753 kWh annually, which is enough energy to power 16 homes.
SRP Business Rebate received: $23,000
Brown Road Water Treatment Plant (BRWTP) LED Retrofit - Phase 2
Out with the old and in with newly upgraded, more-efficient LED lighting. Phase two of the energy-efficient upgrades to the BRWTP means even more indoor and outdoor space are equipped with efficient, durable long-lasting LED fixtures at the facility, which has the capacity to treat up to 72-million gallons of water per day.
Energy Savings: 134,851 kWh savings annually, which is enough energy to power 12 homes.
Reduction of GHS emissions: 115 metric tons of CO2e
SRP Business Rebate received: $5,300
AZ Research Labs - Preliminary Assessment
AZ Labs is a unique campus, owned and managed by the City of Mesa, made up of seven buildings designed to support up to 250 researchers and engineers. With the assistance from SRP Business Rebates, an old, inefficient chiller that had reached the end of its life was replaced with a new efficient chiller that serves multiple buildings. The new equipment will save 176,000 kWh per year and has a simple payback of about five years.
The City of Mesa also used an additional SRP incentive to conduct an initial assessment of future energy-efficiency projects at AZ Labs. The custom preliminary assessment conducted by the Qualified Service Provider, McKinstry, evaluated potential heating, ventilation and air conditioning and controls upgrades to help the City is determine its next steps to save.
SRP Business Rebate received: $23,000
In addition to the SRP Business Rebates, the City of Mesa also participated in and received SRP's Business Electric Vehicle Charging and Fleet Assessment Rebate. The $20,000 incentive provides a complete study for businesses to convert their fleets to electric.
To learn how to make businesses of all sizes more energy efficient and sustainable to conserve precious resources and save money, visit savewithsrpbiz.com.
City of Mesa hits record of $300,000 SRP Business Rebates this year
Total energy savings: 2.9 million kilowatt hours, which is enough to power more than 270 homes
Environmental benefits: 2,073 metric tons of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions reduced, which is the equivalent to the carbon sequestered by 2,454 acres of U.S. forests in one year.
SRP's energy efficiency programs are a major component to the success of SRP's Sustainable Portfolio and 2035 Sustainability Goals, www.srpnet.com/2035, because decreasing energy use also helps reduce emissions and saves money by deferring the need for future additional energy generation.
SRP is a community-based, not-for-profit public power utility and the largest provider of electricity in the greater Phoenix metropolitan area, serving more than 1 million customers. SRP is also the metropolitan area's largest supplier of water, delivering about 800,000 acre-feet annually to municipal, urban and agricultural water users.
About City of Mesa
With a population of more than 504,000 Mesa, Arizona is the 37th largest city in the United States and second largest in the Phoenix-Mesa metro area. Mesa encompasses 138 square miles inside a 21-city region that has a population of 4.9 million people and is projected to grow to 5.4 million by 2026.
Mesa is a favorite destination to thousands of visitors with more than 300 sun-filled days a year and average temperature of 72.6 degrees. The area's economy is driven by four major industries healthcare, education, aerospace, and tourism. Mesa is home to two award-winning airports, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport and Falcon Field Airport. For more information about the City of Mesa go to mesaaz.gov.
About Resource Innovations
Resource Innovations is SRP's Business Solutions program implementation contractor and a substantially woman-owned and woman-led energy consulting firm dedicated to creating equal access to clean resources through diverse partnerships. The company's deep roots and broad expertise in resource efficiency, policy development, coalition & partnership building, and market-based technology support enable the delivery of highly successful energy programs. Resource Innovations brings over 20 years of expertise in demand-side management, grid management, and renewables, as well as a comprehensive suite of software designed to support these initiatives.