We’ve been proud to have our solutions qualified for electric and gas utility On-Bill Funding and On-Bill Repayment programs (OBF/OBR). These programs are a terrific way to get energy cost savings with $0 upfront costs.
Here’s how they work, see this U.S. Department of Energy description. In short: OBF/OBR programs pay 100% of the cost of the energy saving project (lighting, building envelope fixes, etc.). And then, spread out project payments over 3-5 years, as just a single new line item on your monthly utility bill. They’re structured so that (monthly savings) are > (monthly payment) — so cash flow positive from Day 1, and your savings start immediately!
Electric and gas utilities across the U.S. are expanding OBF/OBR programs, in response to customer demand. And PACE AI is a qualified solution for all these programs, given our IPMVP-compliant, 24/7/365 savings verification technology and fast payback, even before incentives. We can now offer OBF/OBR in California, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, and Texas, and with Constellation Energy customers, anywhere in the U.S. Contact us for details!
A great project by one of our Energy Service Company (ESCO) partners, for its large real estate client, shows the power of PACE AI to deliver “cut and track” cost and carbon reductions, fast. And with utility incentives making it easy to say yes.
Phase 1 of the project will retrofit 134 large HVAC units on 12 buildings, in an office/residential planned development in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. Installation is by local HVAC contractors: PACE’s cell-based edge+cloud solutions can be installed quickly by your regular HVAC firm, with touchscreen-based instructions and savings that start immediately upon cloud connection.
The project will reduce electric cooling consumption by over 2.5 million kWh per year, and lower peak demand from the site by over 1,300 kW. Utility rebates give the project an excellent ROI. And after installation, PACE AI’s patented Demand Response options will give the client additional revenue choices, while at the same time helping the Texas grid.
Our homes are a big part of the electric grid, and skyrocketing electric and gas costs are a new misery for many homeowners — in the U.S., and in recent weeks even more so internationally.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration reports that residential was the biggest electricity use sector in 2021, at 39% (nearly 1.5 trillion kWh) — even higher than the commercial sector, at 35%. From PACE AI’s strong base in commercial/industrial cooling and heating cost and carbon cutting, we’re excited with a new initiative with a major residential-focused equipment partner, to bring PACE AI to Smart Home. Results in field trials are good, so stay tuned!
PACE is happy to report that we’ve reached agreement on new development funding with Hitachi, as we build together new solutions to cut energy use and carbon in buildings and industry.
In both, as the old wisdom goes, “you can’t control what you can’t see”. And an article this week from Bloomberg News lays out the problem succinctly, in reporting on the failure of the U.K.’s building energy ratings system to predict actual energy use. The authors also point out the related problems with the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program, which is focused more on sustainability measures.
From the article: “There’s often very little connection between modeled and actual energy use. Even in brand new buildings we struggle to make predictions.” — Professor David Coley, University of Bath
Read the article here.
Continuing our global expansion in Industrial IoT, we’re pleased to be working with Sodexo and its U.S.-based partners in projects for industrial and manufacturing clients in both E.U. and Asia. With the enormous process heating and cooling demands of the world’s industrial plants, and the parallel impact on companies’ carbon footprints and operating costs, PACE AI brings an easy-to-add, highly scalable way to both cut and track, for both carbon and costs.
PACE AI recently delivered 27% HVAC cooling savings for a Hitachi manufacturing plant in the Midwest U.S. The 27% AI/ML reductions, in both cooling kWh and electric cost and in greenhouse gas impact, were achieved complementary with and additive to the plant’s existing building automation system, and with the same or better HVAC comfort and performance — both, typical of PACE AI.
Even better, utility rebates bring the full project ROI (as simple payback) to 2 years (IRR of 40%+), and with a 3 year savings warranty backed by a global insurance company. And PACE AI edge+cloud monitoring also allows for easy tracking of carbon impacts, in future programs.
The project is part of a multi-phased application of PACE AI for the division, to include plant-floor manufacturing as well as other IIoT applications.
PACE is pleased to have entered into a Master Service Agreement with Sparkfund, a leading climate-focused U.S. energy and smart building company. The Sparkfund Platform™ provides As-A-Service energy efficiency, smart grid, water conservation, and other solutions to Sparkfund’s customers, with 2,000 projects completed to date in 43 states. Learn more here.
We are proud of our strategic partner Hitachi, Ltd. for enlisting as a Principal Partner in the upcoming International Climate Change Summit (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland. The global conference will run from November 1-12, 2021, and with last week’s release of a dire IPCC update on climate change acceleration, which U.N. Secretary General António Guterres called a “code red for humanity”, worldwide action on carbon reduction and climate change mitigation has never been more important.
In Hitachi’s Social Innovation vision, low-carbon and resource-efficient innovations are a top priority. And with its worldwide operations and offerings in advanced manufacturing, infrastructure, and electric grid operations, Hitachi is uniquely positioned for impact.
As Alistair Dormer, Chief Environmental Officer of Hitachi, Ltd., stated: “Partnering with COP26 and playing our role in tackling climate change is a source of great pride for Hitachi. We are actively orienting our business towards the sustainable technology of the future. We see IT, Smart Energy, Industry and Mobility as having a major role to play in decarbonisation and believe we can use our many businesses and the power of digital innovation, to help governments, cities and businesses reduce their environmental impact.” Learn more about COP26 here.
It’s the oldest story in getting energy savings — I want the cash flow and the carbon reductions, but how do I pay for it?
For big commercial properties and for the “MUSH” sector (Municipal/State, Universities, Schools and Hospitals), multi-year Energy Savings Performance Contracts (“ESPC”) and more recently, Efficiency as a Service (“EaaS”) structures have provided zero-upfront-cost ways to get to positive cash flow quickly from energy efficiency projects.
But there’s been a big and largely unmet need for these no-money-down structures for Small-Medium Commercial buildings and, even more importantly, for the residential sector. The U.S. has over 83 million single-family detached homes, and many, many of those homes, plus multi-family and small commercial buildings, could achieve 20%-50%+ annual reductions in their energy bills within 2-3 weeks, with the right kinds of projects.
Our PACE AI partner Liberty Homes, with a founding team of U.S. Department of Energy veterans, is answering this need with its innovative Pay As You Save® (PAYS) structure. PAYS not only pays 100% upfront for energy efficiency and demand reduction projects, but also gets you the verification of your savings via metered data. Major utilities and electric cooperatives across America are adapting PAYS into their customer offerings — contact us to learn more.
We’re excited to be advancing the applications of PACE AI with Hitachi, in a critical area of need in this era of climate change: water conservation in irrigation and in water and wastewater municipal operations. Especially given this summer’s searing heat across much of the U.S., applying smart technology in water conservation has seldom been more important.
California has recognized that the old power industry saying that “you need water to make electricity and electricity to make water” is still true, as this Los Angeles Times article talks about in reviewing statewide programs in combined water/energy conservation: https://www.latimes.com/environment/newsletter/2021-03-04/want-to-save-energy-and-fight-climate-change-try-using-less-water-boiling-point