Wastewater Reuse for Greater Energy Efficiency

March 1, 2007
• U.S. Navy to save $33 million in energy costs while increasing use of renewable energy sources at Va.'s dam neck annex.

• U.S. Navy to Save $33 Million in Energy Costs While Increasing Use of Renewable Energy Sources at Va.’s Dam Neck Annex

With the Energy Policy Act of 2005 setting federal energy reduction goals, government entities like the U.S. Navy continue to look for ways to reduce energy use and increase use of renewable energy - especially at bases like Dam Neck Annex near Virginia Beach, VA.

Dam Neck is the home of the Navy’s Training Support Center Hampton Roads and host to over 5,600 instructors, students and support personnel. Each year, over 17,000 students graduate from one of over 200 courses of instruction. Strategically located within 30 minutes of 50% of the U.S. Fleet, joint forces, and NATO Commands, as well as in close proximity to Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana and major Army and Air Force Commands, Dam Neck has a distinct advantage of providing training and testing services to the Fleet using the only test and training space in the world covered by advanced land-based SPS-48, SPS-49 and SPY-1 radars.

With tight budgets and increasing need for base-wide building renovations to ensure good quality of life for those serving the country, Dam Neck officials looked to alternative funding, single-source accountability and renewable energy to meet its goals. That’s why the facility recently signed a $33 million base-wide Energy Savings Performance Contract (ESPC) with Trane, a leading global provider of indoor comfort systems and comprehensive facility solutions.

ESPCs help the federal government create high-performance building environments by funding construction of much-needed building upgrades through energy savings. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, over 400 ESPC projects have been awarded by 19 different federal agencies in 46 states. In fact, $1.9 billion has been invested in U.S. federal facilities through ESPCs, saving 16 trillion BTUs annually, equivalent to the annual energy used by a city of about 450,000.

Efforts at Dam Neck will yield an estimated $2.5 million in annual energy cost savings, with an additional estimated $500,000 in operations and maintenance cost savings. To yield these energy savings, Trane has designed a system that uses liquid waste from Hampton Roads Sanitary District to cool and heat the base. About 14 million gpd of liquid waste will be used for the 4,400 tons of new and replacement chillers and heat pumps included in the project.

By using liquid waste instead of a traditional ground source heat exchange system, there’s no need to drill a geothermal well field for the heat exchange process, saving on construction costs. Since cooling units are located indoors, they won’t be exposed to corrosive effects of the base’s oceanfront location - prolonging life of the units.

“Identifying and taking every energy-saving measure possible yields more than just cost benefits,” said Bob Johnson, institutional market sales leader at Trane. “Reducing the amount of energy consumed helps stabilize the energy market while protecting precious environmental resources. The Dam Neck project is one shining example of this.”

Construction on the new system, estimated to take 20 months, includes other energy conservation measures, including replacement of 18,000 lighting fixtures in 23 buildings with new energy efficient models, and upgrading 5,000 water fixtures in 37 buildings to help conserve water use. Dam Neck facilities managers will use the Trane Tracer Summit building automation system to control the climate, lighting and energy consumption in 28 buildings.

Trane, based in Piscataway, NJ, is the air conditioning systems and services business of American Standard Companies. Contact: 732-980-6386 or www.trane.com