One more… with ENERGY

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Geothermal at Southeast

These pipes are part of the geothermal system at the Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant.

We wrap up the week with exciting cost savings measures at our Water Pollution Control Plants. 

Since the cost of energy is one of the driving forces behind our overall expense increases, we have sought to reduce the amount of energy we use, and to produce it ourselves from renewable sources. The Northeast Water Pollution Control Plant (NEWPCP) Biogas Project will generate electricity and thermal energy for use on-site, fueled mainly by biogas from the plant's digesters. This project is designed to generate 5.6 MW of power and is expected to reduce PWD’s energy costs by over $12 million over the course of the 16-year contract with renewable energy company Ameresco, Inc.

At our Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant, we’ve installed a 250 kW solar array (in addition to a geothermal project) expected to pay-off its entire installation cost in just nine years. And get this: the Federal Government paid for half of it! The project was made possible by $850,000 from the Recovery Act’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant awarded to the City from the Department of Energy (DOE) and $850,000 from PWD and technical assistance from DOE’s Solar America Cities program. After nine years… nothing but nice, clean, solar-generated electricity.

PWD remains committed to keeping our own costs low so that any rate adjustments we request are as reasonable and low as possible for our customers. These are just the first of what we hope will be many similar efforts in the future to lower our dependence on fossil fuels, contribute to a healthier environment, and lower our costs for energy. Look for more information about our waste-to-energy measures at PWD’s exhibit at the Philadelphia Flower Show, Saturday March 2nd through Sunday March 10th.