By Earl Bittner, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southeast Public Affairs
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (NNS) -- Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Southeast selected Pensacola Energy of Pensacola, Florida to receive a $31.5 million award Sept. 29, for a Utility Energy Service Contract (UESC) project to bring energy upgrades to Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola.
A UESC is a limited-source contract between a federal agency and its serving utility for energy and water efficiency improvements and demand-reduction services.
"This project improves on the culture of energy conversation at NAS Pensacola, reinforcing our commitment to good stewardship of the environment, gaining efficiencies in our infrastructure, and reducing energy consumption by 10 percent over our 2015 baseline," said NAS Pensacola Commanding Officer Capt. Christopher Martin. "We continue our partnership with Pensacola Energy and recognize the remarkable work that both teams have contributed in putting this project into action."
The UESC will apply several energy conservation measures to 43 facilities at NAS Pensacola. The project calls for the design and installation of interior and exterior lighting upgrades, water conservation measures, chiller plant improvements, upgrades to NAS Pensacola's energy management and control system (EMCS), and building envelope improvements.
In addition, the project will include transformer replacements to improve energy security and mechanical upgrades to modernize the heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) systems in many of the base facilities. All EMCS improvements were carefully analyzed for compatibility with Department of the Navy cyber security and "Smart Grid" future goals.
"The energy managers and project teams on both sides have developed a tremendous project that greatly increases the efficiencies of our building systems, reducing our overall energy consumption," said NAS Pensacola Public Works Officer Cmdr. Brent Paul. "We had to get creative in recent years as budgets tightened, and this utilization of private financing is another tool we have in our tool box to execute necessary facility improvements and achieve our energy reduction goals."
Many of the electrical savings built into this contract involve a systematic process of ensuring all energy conservation measures achieve facility performance, as well as utilize new technology. The project will bring a host of HVAC advances to NAS Pensacola, including the installation of new chillers, variable frequency drives, and chilled water pumps. Lighting upgrades consist of converting interior and exterior lights in buildings to light-emitting diode (LED) light sources.
"This project is projected to save more than 98,000 MBtu (million British thermal units) and approximately 82,200,000 gallons of water annually," said NAS Pensacola Installation Energy Manager Sabrina Williams. "That equates to about $2.9 million annually in combined energy and water savings."
The project falls under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which authorizes agencies to use appropriations, private financing, or a combination of both to comply with its requirements for UESCs for evaluations/project implementation.
It also supports President Barack Obama's announcement, December 2011, of a $4 billion investment in energy upgrades to combined federal and private sector buildings. When announced, investments were intended to save billions in energy costs, promote energy independence and, according to independent estimates, create tens of thousands of jobs in the hard-hit construction sector.
The $4 billion investment in 2011 included a $2 billion commitment, made through the issuance of a Presidential Memorandum, to energy upgrades of federal buildings using long-term energy savings to pay for up-front costs, at no cost to taxpayers.
The project is expected to be completed by November 2018.