Bay State aims to curb electricity use and costs through management plan
Massachusetts’ Division of Capital Asset Management (DCAM) will closely administer electricity consumption in state facilities through its recently signed statewide contract with CPower, an energy management firm based in New York City. The company will provide demand response and permanent peak reduction services to Massachusetts state facilities, including the Holyoke Soldiers’ Home (photo) in Holyoke, Mass., which is operated by the state’s Office of Health and Human Services.
Under the terms of agreement, CPower will renew its existing demand response capacity of 25 megawatts (MW) in the region and contribute an additional 25 MW of capacity, through the 30 Minute Real Time Demand Response and 30 Minute Real Time Emergency Generation Programs. The two programs, offered through ISO New England, the independent system operator responsible for managing New England’s electrical grid, enable facilities to participate in demand response through both load curtailment and emergency generation.
The company also will offer On Peak Hours Demand Resources Projects, a permanent peak reduction program for state agencies introduced by ISO New England. The new program pays participants for energy efficiency, distributed generation and load management projects based on each project’s permanent peak demand reduction value.
“As energy costs continue to climb, it becomes increasingly vital to manage electricity usage and costs. CPower enables our state agencies to do just that in the most effective and economical manner possible,” said Mark Nelson, deputy commissioner in the Division of Capital Asset Management. “CPower has proven its value to the state over the past several years with its comprehensive portfolio of demand response services and expertise in managing our agencies’ participation in the programs. We are confident in their ability to oversee additional programs with our agencies and help ensure that a consistent electricity supply is maintained throughout the state.”
With the new statewide contract, other public sector entities, such as municipal buildings, county facilities and facilities belonging to water, building and transportation authorities may now participate in CPower’s Demand Response Programs and On Peak Hours Demand Resources Projects.
In 2005, ISO New England opened a competitive bid for energy capacity in response to concerns about the region’s gas and power supply. At that time, the company was one of two providers that were awarded capacity. Originally positioned to be a one-year contract, CPower’s contract was extended by the state of Massachusetts for three years, and during that time, the state increased the number of participating agencies in the company’s programs and doubled its capacity. The state was unable to extend the existing contract for a second time and opened a bid for a new contract, which was awarded exclusively to CPower.
DCAM client agencies that currently participate in CPower’s demand response program include the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, Massachusetts Department of Corrections, Holyoke Soldiers Home, Massachusetts Hospital School, Massachusetts Information Technology Center and Barnstable County Jail.
“We are very excited to extend our relationship with the Division of Capital Asset Management and increase the state’s participation in demand response,” said Gary Fromer, CEO of CPower. “Not only will participants receive credits in exchange for committing to reduce energy consumption when called to do so, but they will also help alleviate supply constraints throughout the state and generate a new source of funding for additional energy initiatives.”