Maryland to Save Millions on Electricity
The Maryland Department of General Services (DGS) and the University System of Maryland (USM) have completed a competitive electric power procurement using the company’s online energy auction system. The auction-based procurement is expected to save the State $31.3 million over a two-year period. By attracting competing energy suppliers and automating the bidding and procurement process, Maryland purchased 1.4 billion kilowatt hours of electricity, comprising one of its largest electricity procurements ever.
DGS and USM purchased electricity for more than 4,300 accounts spread across the State, including State office buildings, Baltimore City Community College, the Maryland Department of Transportation, the Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services, the Maryland State Police, the District Court of Maryland, and the Maryland Stadium Authority–which operates MT Bank Stadium and Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Several nonprofits also benefited, including the Maryland Food Bank.
“As a business arm of State government, DGS has always made accountability to Maryland taxpayers its top priority,” says Steve Cassard, secretary, DGS. “With this procurement, the DGS-USM partnership was opportunistic and has leveraged the State’s buying power to reduce the impact of increasingly higher energy costs.”
According to Carl LaVerghetta, DGS director of procurement, last week’s auction was the fifth that his agency has conducted using the World Energy Exchange since rate caps expired for commercial and government organizations in 2004.
“Through the World Energy Exchange reverse auction, Maryland has saved an estimated $49.8 million in electricity costs. The results have been outstanding by any measure,” says LaVerghetta. “The reverse auction initiative was key in Maryland winning three awards in 2005 at the joint National Association of State Chief Administrators (NASCA)–National Association of State Facilities Administrators (NASFA) annual event, including the Outstanding Program Award for the most effective cost-saving program of any spend category in any state.”
USM welcomed the opportunity to partner with DGS in this large procurement effort.
“We were impressed with the price and with the fact that the Exchange enabled us to look at various contracting scenarios–with or without additional renewable energy, for example,” says Joan Kowal, energy manager with the University of Maryland (UMD) in College Park.