Cogeneration has been around for a long time, but there has never been a better time for New York and New Jersey facilities to take a serious look at it than right now.Facilities located throughout NY State can have up to 70% of their Cogeneration system paid for by taking advantage of the many great Federal and State Grants and Incentives that are available today.
Cogeneration represents one of the most effective approaches to energy cost reduction, because it produces two types of energy at once – Electric Power and Thermal Energy. In addition to the HUGE BENEFIT of reducing your energy costs by 40-65%, it also serves as an energy backup system for your facility! It reduces the risk of power outages and minimizes the extra cost charged by utilities for electricity during peak-use periods (demand charges).
Cogeneration, a.k.a. Combined Heat & Power (CHP), is the simultaneous production of electricity and heat from a single fuel source – most commonly Natural Gas. When traditional utility power plants burn fuel to produce electricity, they also produce tremendous amounts of heat. The heat, representing approximately 70% of the energy content of the fuel used, is vented into the atmosphere.
With Cogeneration, you generate the electricity on site, capture the waste heat, and utilize it for a variety of applications. This produced heat that is converted into useable energy is at no cost to you because it is a natural by-product of the electricity production. You can heat water – eliminating the need for your boilers, be utilized to heat your facility, or use through an absorption chiller to provide free cooling/AC.
Right now natural gas prices are far below electricity prices, and it looks like it will be so for a long time. So it makes sense to use natural gas to produce electricity. Natural gas is also much less susceptible to interruptions in supply caused by weather situations such as storms and power outages, due to peak loads.
Industrial facilities that require heat or steam for processes were early adopters of cogeneration because of their high need for heat. More recently, owners and managers of commercial buildings have also discovered that cogeneration can be a cost-effective source of reliable energy as well as heating and cooling, which is the single highest operating expense in a typical building.
For many facilities, the return on investment for a Cogeneration system is far greater and recovered in much less time than other facility improvements – ESPECIALLY with the incentives being offered right now. It can extend the life of your existing boilers, chillers, HVAC, and other equipment. The maintenance of the units is 100% hands off and come with 100% replacement of parts over xxx hours of run time. This means that every several years, you have a completely brand new system.
Paul Errigo serves as the Director of Business Development for GREENCROWN Energy (GCE). GCE is a full service Energy Consulting firm specializing in Energy Conservation Measures (ECM), mainly Co-Generation, and Energy Supply Price Reduction. GCE works with businesses large and small in Property Management, Manufacturing, Hospitality, Supermarkets, Warehousing, Education, Municipality, Medical, Warehouse, and Retail. We assist our clients in qualifying them for ECM projects and in obtaining state and federal grants and incentives.