24B — December 22 - January 12, 2018 — Green Buildings — M id A tlantic

Real Estate Journal


G reen B uildings

By George Crawford, Green Partners Combined Heat and Power – Round 2 Lessons Learned


with limited requirements for hot water often do not achieve the energy cost savings levels to justify the cost of a CHP installation. A key factor in any successful CHP installation is longevity of operation. On average, it will take between four to five years of continuous operation to ac- cumulate the savings needed to offset the upfront cost of a CHP installation. By accumulated savings, we are referencing the year over year differential between the costs that would have been incurred for electric and hot water production had the CHP not been installed ver- sus the lower costs of the CHP operation. To make this work, not only do you need to focus on the quality of the equipment, you also need to focus as well on the quality and longevity of the company that stands behind the equipment. When selecting CHP equipment, it is important to understand the structure of the warranty as well as struc- ture of the maintenance pro- gram that will keep your CHP installation up and running. There are a number of unhappy endings for CHP customers who purchased their equipment from CHP manufacturers who then went out of business and were therefore unable able to support their CHP installations - leaving their clients high and dry. The solution here is to only deal with CHP manufacturers that have long and successful track records. Here are two relevant case studies addressing the “high and dry” scenario. The first involves a large 500 unit mul- tifamily building on the upper west side of Manhattan. This building decided to install a CHP system following 9/11 and then the 2003 blackout. This installation was the first resi- dential building in New York State to use CHP. However, the problems with this installation soon became apparent. While this CHP system delivered the anticipated cost savings, the in- stallation itself was of marginal quality and poorly maintained by the manufacturer. The end of the first chapter of this story is that following breakdown af- ter breakdown, the equipment failed beyond repair and had to be abandoned. In a situation like this, you would expect the building to throw in the towel with regard to CHP and go back to Con Ed as their primary continued on page 26B

his article is the sec- ond in a series focusing on the advantages of

series of hurricanes result- ing in numerous blackouts, hospitals and other critical facilities with the foresight to install CHP were able to avoid serious or even tragic conse- quences as a result of their ability to generate their own in-house power. For those criti- cal facilities without adequate emergency backup power, the tragic results were the subject of numerous front page ar- ticles. As well, there were many instances of outages that did not make the front pages of any newspapers, but also ended in tragic outcomes in some cases

and inconveniences in all cases - all of which could have been avoided with a reliable CHP installation. The primary advantage of a CHP installation for backup power over an emergency generator is cost savings. The savings are the result of a lower overall cost for operating the in house CHP installation as compared to the cost of the monthly utility electric bills or if there is a backup generator, the combined cost of the elec- tric utility bills and the cost of maintaining the emergency generator. It is important,

however, to note that a CHP installation does not automati- cally result in a lower cost. The lower cost potential from a CHP installation comes from the heat by-product of a CHP installation. If the heat by- product can be utilized for hot water production, then the cost advantage kicks in. If the heat byproduct cannot be utilized, then the cost advantage is lost. That is why hospitals, nursing homes and residential facili- ties are good candidates for a CHP installation because of their 24/7 requirement for hot water. Commercial facilities

CHP instal- lations. The two primary reasons for interest in CHP – Com- bined Heat and Power also know as COGEN - is

George Crawford

utility cost savings (cost reduc- tions for both electric and hot water production) as well as continuous power in blackout conditions. With the recent

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954 Lexington Avenue * Suite 320 * NewYork, NY 10021 For More Information Visit www.GreenPartnersNY.com or Contact George Crawford, Principal at gcrawford@greenpartnersny.com

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