Spokane Savings Generated by Power Reduction Software

After just one month of testing new power management software, Spokane, WA, estimates annual savings of $15k by lowering computer energy use. We provide details on this effort, as well as how other cities are approaching energy efficiency


What Happened?

The city of Spokane, Washington, recently implemented a power management software solution into municipal computing systems to reduce energy consumption. After one month of testing the software on the government’s 1,300 computers at 60 different sites, Spokane estimates savings of $15,000 annually by lowering PC energy use.

So What?

During the trial run, municipal leaders calculated the city’s benchmark for PC energy consumption surpassed 598,000 kWh per year, totaling $43,500 in electric bills. Once the power management software was deployed, however, the city reported a 35 percent reduction in PC energy consumption dropping the figure to 200,000 kWh per year, as well as lowering greenhouse gas emissions by 280,000 pounds.

City officials developed energy management policies to complement the software, which caused no disruption to workflow or productivity. The power management software places inactive PCs in a sleep mode to save energy, but can easily be jolted back into awake mode for instant access to information and communications.

Riverside Efficiency Program

In Riverside, California, the local government has developed a commercial energy efficiency program to reduce energy consumption and costs for small businesses in the community. The government offers small businesses with a rebate when they invest in power management software to lower consumption, while encouraging companies to set up shop in the city. The program provides businesses with:
  • Financial incentive to offset the costs of investing in power management software for personal computers
  • High return on investment through lower electric bills
  • Freedom to more effectively manage resources while saving money

Small businesses can receive $15 per PC license for the power management software, with a maximum of $25,000 per site. The program involves a partnership with Smart Riverside and Riverside Public Utilities, which are in charge of determining eligibility and rebate amount per customer. To qualify, companies must:

  • Deploy power management software and monitor consumption
  • Report on energy savings from the software after three months of use
  • Submit proof of purchase and energy savings report with the application

In providing the rebates, the city is tackling both economic challenges by driving business growth while lowering energy consumption to meet environmental goals.

Seattle Tracks Energy Use

The city of Seattle is also looking to track and reduce energy use by launching a tracking campaign to gather and analyze energy consumption data from 87 percent of commercial and residential buildings larger than 50,000 square feet. The project is part of the city’s Energy Benchmarking and Reporting Ordinance that requires eligible building owners to track energy consumption through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Portfolio Manager online tool.

To comply with city guidelines, building owners must log into the portfolio manager and find the building’s code, create a profile, launch automated benchmarking of utilities and send the reports to the city. The program aims to reduce energy costs for owners and tenants, improve environmentally-friendly practices, create job opportunities and keep owners and consumers informed on how to reduce energy consumption.

Other Energy Efforts

Gov1 is diligently tracking measures taken by other energy-conscious cities looking to increase savings and innovate energy technology for residents.

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