Water and electricity don’t mix right? However, energy management is an important component of a well-managed water or wastewater utility. Around 30% of a typical water utility’s operation and maintenance expenses are energy related. This number can be much higher for wastewater plants. Water systems primarily use energy moving water from place to place via pumping, finished water pumping being the largest energy user1.
There are several ways to implement energy management at your facility. We believe the New York State Energy Research & Development Authority (NYSERDA) has developed a straight forward approach. NYSERDA defines 7 steps to implement a strong energy management program. These steps are:
- Step 1. Establish Organizational Commitment
- Step 2. Develop a Baseline of Energy Use
- Step 3. Evaluate the System and Collect Data
- Step 4. Identify Energy Efficiency Opportunities
- Step 5. Prioritize Opportunities for Implementation
- Step 6. Develop an Implementation Plan
- Step 7. Provide for Progress Tracking and Reporting
These steps and more information about them can be found by downloading the NYSERDA Water & Wastewater Energy Management Best Practices Handbook which can be found here.
It is common for a water or wastewater system manager to never see a copy of the electri c bill. Understanding your energy bill(s) and rate schedule(s) is one of the quickest ways to see possible cost savings. The SW EFC can offer assistance with these two issues. There are also blog posts, webinars and tools available to help you on this site.