SCEO receives $900,000 grant to improve industrial energy
October 4, 2009
The South Carolina Energy Office (SCEO) will receive $900,000 to help South Carolina manufacturers improve their energy efficiency. Over the next three years, the SCEO and the South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP) will assist companies in lowering their energy usage through energy assessments and training workshops. The SCEO was awarded the funding through a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) “Save Energy Now” competitive grant, a program aimed at helping American businesses and manufacturing facilities save energy and offset rising energy costs.
“This grant will enable us to help more of South Carolina’s manufacturers become energy effi cient and improve productivity,” said John Irion, president of SCMEP.
Assessments help companies identify savings opportunities, focusing on things like process heating, steam, pumps, fans and compressed air. The overall goal of each assessment will be to develop a plan that increases energy effi ciency by at least 2.5 percent per year. It’s an amount, according to the SCEO’s Tom Hudkins, that will add up quickly over time.
“Although 2.5 percent may initially sound like a small number, it’s anything but,” he said. “When you’re talking about these facilities and the amount of power they use, 2.5 percent becomes an enormous fi gure over the course of several years.”
A minimum of 24 assessments are planned over the next 36 months; they’ll be aimed primarily at medium to mid-size manufacturers. Eligibility will be based on the highest savings potential as determined by DOE. Additionally, SCMEP will use its partner network to host training sessions throughout the state to further promote ways to increase energy efficiency.