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Breakthroughs Magazine

Notable Achievements

Ukraine project earns international recognition

Gostomel glass

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory received the International Energy Project of the Year Award 2000 in recognition of its efforts to promote energy efficiency at the Gostomel glass plant in Ukraine and reduce its reliance on power generated at Chornobyl reactors. Since 1996, Pacific Northwest and its partners, the Ukranian Energy Efficiency Center and Industrial Real Estate, have worked with Gostomel to develop a comprehensive energy-efficiency program and attract financing for implementation.

Gostomel already has invested more than $750,000 in three waste heat recovery boilers, new steam pipe insulation and an efficient air compressor. Together these suggested improvements are saving the private, profitable manufacturer of glass bottles and containers more than $220,000 a year. The plant also received approval for $3.9 million in external funding to upgrade its glass furnaces.

The project at Gostomel is part of the Industrial Energy Efficiency Program, which is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy and the U.S. Agency for International Development and managed by Pacific Northwest.

Gostomel is one of ten industrial plants supported through this program, which helps Ukrainian manufacturers improve their energy-efficiency to be more competitive. In total, these plants have invested more than $1 million of their own funds in recommended energy efficiency measures. The other facilities include a coke chemical plant, a food processing plant, a tire plant and a producer of steel cables.

In addition to recognizing Pacific Northwest as an organization, the Association of Energy Engineers also specifically named staff members Meredydd Evans and Steve Parker in the award.

Energy-efficiency projects receive federal awards

Two of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's energy efficiency projects—one focused on military family housing and one on the Laboratory's own office buildings—earned prestigious awards from DOE and the Federal Interagency Policy Committee.

Each year, the Federal Energy and Water Management Awards recognize outstanding contributions in energy efficiency, renewable energy, water conservation, and cost-beneficial landscaping.

In Search of the Energy Bandit

The energy bandit leads the way

The first project that received an award was an outreach campaign targeting energy-efficient behaviors among 12,000 residents in military housing at the U.S. Army's Fort Lewis Installation in Washington state. This joint Laboratory-Army project led to a 10 percent reduction in energy use and saved the Army the equivalent of more than $130,000 in energy costs in fiscal year 1999.

Complete with an energy bandit—a cartoon villain who steals energy from people's homes—the "Operation Energy" campaign urged residents to adopt behaviors such as turning thermostats down at night and running full wash loads. A survey showed that as a result of the campaign, 92 percent of residents began doing something new to use energy more efficiently.

The program's success formed the basis for guidelines for implementing a similar program at other military bases.

Office sweet office

The second award-winning project involved the Environmental Technology Building (ETB) and the Energy and Environmental Sciences Building on Pacific Northwest's campus.

Energy consumption in the two office buildings -- Before Recommissioning and After

The team responsible for recommissioning the heating and cooling systems at these buildings discovered that some energy management control settings were incorrect and some of the control sensors were not functioning, causing the systems to work improperly and inefficiently.

Adjustments and repairs not only increased occupant comfort, but also helped save an estimated $95,000 in utility costs in fiscal year 1999 by reducing energy use by 3.2 million kilowatt-hours. The biggest savings were in the ETB, where energy use in 1998 (before the recommissioning) was 40 percent higher than in 1995.

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