Mayor Domenic J. Sarno, Superintendent of Schools Daniel Warwick, CAFO Timothy J. Plante, and Executive Director of Parks, Buildings, and Recreation Management Patrick Sullivan welcomed area businesses, government partners and city officials to announce that the city has reduced its energy consumption by 26%. An Energy Appreciation Luncheon was held on Tuesday, September 24 at the Carriage House in Forest Park.
Springfield was one of the first communities to meet the energy reduction goals of the Commonwealth’s Green Communities Program. Springfield has now achieved a significant reduction for three consecutive years, meeting its goals in advance of the 2022 target date the state has set for energy reduction. This effort has saved the city over $3.5 million in annual fuel costs. Through this process, Springfield modernized its facilities by replacing outdated, unreliable equipment, and improving comfort for building occupants. Springfield remains focused on continuing its leadership in energy efficiency.
Mayor Sarno shared a Master Plan Case Study which outlines the city’s efforts over the past eleven years and details how the city accomplished this significant milestone. The case study recognizes inter-departmental cooperation along with the local businesses that assisted in achieving this 26 percent energy reduction. The project started by conducting a building –by- building survey of our municipal facilities. This quickly illustrated the need to facilitate improvements to our heating, lighting, and cooling units. Energy projects have included installing new boilers, energy management systems, domestic hot water upgrades, replacement of motors and drives, and energy efficient lighting. These improvements have resulted in removing from the atmosphere 13,309,986 lbs. of carbon dioxide, 13,546 lbs. of nitrogen oxide, and 20,785 lbs. of sulfur dioxide annually. To put this into perspective, this is equivalent to planting 35,525 acres of trees, 6,410 cars being taken off the road, and eliminating 69,880 barrels of oil over a five-year period.
Mayor Domenic J. Sarno stated, “The City of Springfield has been engaged in the design, implementation, and continuous review of a successful, comprehensive energy master plan that was initiated over ten years ago and continues to deliver remarkable results. Beginning with understanding our energy use in a clear and concise manner, learning to procure energy more cost effectively, and continuing through several initial projects, we learned to control our usage and costs and to design our projects to deliver improvements not only in energy consumption, but also in creating healthier environments for our schools and municipal buildings. Springfield’s energy master plan is a culmination of years of hard work and it has allowed us to contribute to an eco-friendly sustainable future. We are thrilled that the city has been recognized for its accomplishment and we should all be proud of our efforts in these vital endeavors.”
Superintendent Daniel Warwick added, “The work being completed in our school buildings has had a tremendous impact on the learning environment. Removing boilers that were in some cases over 100 years old has allowed the city to improve the operations of the facilities while at the same time improving the learning environment for teachers and students. Efficient energy measures also have provided significant savings, allowing for a broader investment in needed improvements to our school infrastructure. I commend Mayor Sarno and his team for the impressive accomplishments that are being heralded today.”
CAFO TJ Plante stated, “The city has made very strategic decisions in the management of its electrical and fuel accounts. We no longer depend on utility companies’ rate structures and we have procured our energy needs through a competitive bidding process that has allowed the city to stabilize its energy budget. The investment into new boilers, lightings upgrades, and energy management systems has allowed the city to save millions of dollars on an annual basis. These savings have provided the funding to invest into other improvements across the city.”
Executive Director of PBRM Patrick Sullivan said, “This Master Plan Energy Case Study highlights the successful collaboration between city departments and the private sector in achieving this significant energy reduction. When we initiated this project it was hard to imagine we would be able to reach our goal by 2022. However, with everyone working together we have achieved these savings and reduced our carbon footprint four years earlier than anticipated. I have to commend Mayor Sarno for implementing methods the city now utilizes to manage its utility accounts and for providing departments with the necessary resources to achieve energy reduction. It also has been rewarding to have launched other “Green Initiatives” over the past three years — and when you combine our reduction of synthetic fertilizers and increased tree plantings with our energy savings we are making a significant impact in building a healthier environment for our city. We are grateful to our businesses and government partners as they have worked diligently with us over the past ten years. The key to this 26 percent energy reduction success is having all partners working together for a better Springfield.”