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What’s So Special About Special Districts?

Whether they’re heralded as shining examples of democracy or disparaged as autonomous “ghost governments,” special districts are generally misunderstood by the public.  If you’re unclear about what they are, what they do, and why they’re “special,” you’re in good company. Why They’re Special Special districts are, essentially, local-level government agencies, separate from cities or counties. …

Apr 12, 2019

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Commercial & Industrial

Understanding Your Compressed Air System

Improving and maintaining a compressed air system at its peak performance requires analyzing the interaction of the demand and supply sides of the system and the individual components, known as a systems approach. Most compressed air systems use more energy than is needed to support the demand. A complete review of a system and careful …

Ben Stewart

November 24, 2016

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Commercial & Industrial

Ask the Energy Optimization Experts: Lighting Efficiency

Question: How can I improve the lighting efficiency of my facility’s system? Answer from the Energy Optimization Experts: Lighting efficiency system issues, which include problems with outdated fixtures, uncontrolled fixtures and cleanliness can take several forms. An energy audit will typically identify energy inefficiencies in one or several of the following areas: Incandescent lamps are used …

Ben Stewart

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Education

Leveraging Prop 39 Funding for CA to Create Clean Energy Jobs

For the past year, SmartWatt’s Placentia and Rocklin, California offices have worked jointly with the California Conservation Corps (CCC) Energy Corps crews to make energy solutions more affordable for California’s K-12 schools and community colleges. This year, they expanded the relationship and began leveraging the California Proposition 39-funded program to launch an internship program in …

Ben Stewart

November 20, 2016

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Commercial & Industrial

Solar Investment Tax Credit to Burn up by 2017

The solar energy industry is on the rise, and helping to lead the way in cleaner, sustainable energy. The cost of producing and purchasing solar energy systems has dropped significantly over the past few years, in part due to tax credit and rebate programs such as the Solar Investment Tax Credit. It is one of the …

Ben Stewart

November 11, 2016

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Mechanical Systems

Ask the Expert: HVAC Heating

Question: How can I improve the energy efficiency of my facility’s heating system? Answer: HVAC heating issues, which include problems with component maintenance and temperature control, can take several forms. An energy audit will typically identify energy inefficiencies in one or several of the following areas: Air inlets or outlets are dirty or obstructed Boiler …

Ben Stewart

November 8, 2016

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Mechanical Systems

Ask the Expert: Ancillary Systems

Question: How can I improve the energy efficiency of my facility’s ancillary systems? Answer: Ancillary systems issues, which include problems with kitchen equipment, laundry equipment and pools can take several forms. A needs anaylsis will typically identify energy inefficiencies in one or several of the following areas: Kitchen equipment is not used efficiently In-house laundry …

Ben Stewart

November 5, 2016

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Utility

Innovation: Integrating Renewable Energy Into the Grid

Many utilities want to learn how to integrate renewable energy into the electrical grid. What better way than to help fund a test bed devoted to that very principle? To that end, National Grid announced recently that it will give two grants totaling $1 million to SUNY Polytechnic Institute for its new 356,000-square-foot ZEN building. …

Ben Stewart

November 3, 2016

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Commercial & Industrial

The Benefits of Energy Benchmarking

Energy benchmarking is becoming an increasingly popular way to ensure energy compliance and motivate facilities to improve their efficiency. Last year, for example, the District of Columbia published final regulations to implement a new requirement that all large private buildings benchmark their energy and water performance annually. And New York City’s Local Law 84, instituted …

Ben Stewart

October 30, 2016

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