City of Summerside working with Honeywell to become
more energy efficient
Rob Philpott outside Summerside’s city hall. City hall is one of the facilities being audited to determine energy efficiency and where there is room for improvement.
Summerside is going green, but not in colour.
“We’re very proud of our reputation as an energy leader in the region. But having said that we know that some of our
facilities we constructed during a time where energy efficient technology was just starting to appear,”
said Rob Philpott, the chief financial officer for the City of Summerside.
Since then there has been a lot of progress made, he added. On Thursday the city announced their partnership with Honeywell,
an energy services provider selected through a RFP process. “We decided to engage them because of their reputation for energy management and
leadership. They’ve done many of theses projects over the years with municipalities, hospitals and universities so we wanted to tap into expertise.”
The city’s Energy and Facility Renewal Program, which is cost neutral to the city, will look at areas in city facilities and the city itself to realize
areas of improvement in energy usage. At this point, there is no target reduction set. “We don’t have one in mind yet simply because right now
Honeywell is in the process of doing their audits. They’re going to be looking at the building envelopes, lighting, heating and ventilation.”
For context, said Philpott, the city’s annual energy bill, which includes heat and electricity that is consumed at all of the facilities, is
about $1 million a year. “Then if you add on the electricity it takes for the streetlights throughout the city, that’s another half a million dollars approximately.
When you look at a $1.5 million expense every year, there are hopefully opportunities to reduce it.” The first phase of the program involves an assessment
of the city’s building infrastructure, which includes validating the current conditions as well as occupancy schedules. Systems such as heating, ventilation,
air conditioning, mechanical equipment, lighting, building automation and air distribution systems will be the main areas of focus. The audit will also
look at street lighting to see if there are opportunities to save on the amount of electricity being used across the city. “We’re looking at just about all
city facilities including city hall, the fire department, the police station, Credit Union Place, the Culture Summerside properties as well as the municipal
services buildings. Once the audits are complete, the City will meet with Honeywell and discuss the upgrades that align with the City’s energy, sustainability
and other facility goals. Those selected will be aimed at revitalizing the city’s infrastructure while permanently reducing utility consumption and operating
costs as well as lower the city’s environmental footprint. There are always opportunities for improvement and we’re really trying hard to reduce our
carbon footprint especially with the possible implementation of a carbon tax system for the province pending.”