Announced on Friday, the City of Hayward has won the Acterra 2016 Business Environmental Award for its green power initiative at the City’s water pollution control facility. While the award focuses on the impressive amount of renewable energy generated at the facility, the way that Hayward is leveraging that renewable energy to fund other sustainability projects may be just as impressive.
As shared in the City’s press release, “the City of Hayward Water Pollution Control Facility’s Green Power Project generates 11 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of power annually from solar and biogas energy systems. Most wastewater treatment facilities are energy intensive, requiring vast amounts of power to run pumps and equipment. The Hayward plant produces power at 129% of its own needs. The excess power becomes a credit on its PG&E energy account and is used to offset energy costs for other City facilities. This cost savings to the City allows funds to be redirected to other improvements such as improved efficiency of digesters to produce added biogas for energy production. In addition, the plant supplies 2.5-4 million gallons/day of secondary treated wastewater as cooling water to the nearby Calpine natural gas power plant, thus reducing its effluent pumping cost to the bay by 20%. This provision of secondary effluent to Calpine has reduced the plant’s potable water use by an equivalent of what is typically used by 13,000 to 21,000 homes annually. Finally, a Fats Oils and Grease (FOG) receiving station was designed in-house and now accepts over 200,000 gallons of waste that would otherwise be disposed in landfills or trucked to distant processing stations. The City Council at the City of Hayward has made a tremendous commitment to become more environmentally sustainable and has matched that commitment by funding these innovative and important projects, with more on the way.”
To learn more about the technologies the City of Hayward uses to create renewable energy at their waste water facility, check out the facility’s webpage, or this great video from City:
For information on the construction at the facility that made this all possible, click here.
The City of Hayward is one of the facilities in PG&E’s service area that is operating under the Renewable Energy Self Generation Bill Credit Transfer (RES-BCT) tariff that allows the City to generate and transfer excess energy for use at other City facilities. For more information on how this tariff works for local governments in PG&E territory, click here.
For information on how other local governments are finding ways to set aside energy savings to create a fund for energy efficiency projects, click here.