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Peterson to get energy overhaul

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Florida -- Forty buildings on Peterson Air Force Base are about to be evaluated for a prospective energy makeover.

The Air Force Installation Contracting Agency, in conjunction with the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, recently released a notice of intent to award to Schneider Electric Buildings Americas, Inc., the energy service company that will potentially execute an energy savings performance contract at the Air Force Space Command installation.

Schneider will now conduct an investment grade audit of the 40 facilities within the scope of the ESPC, recommending energy upgrade opportunities to bring efficiency and energy savings to Peterson, without up-front capital investment by the Air Force. This enables the Air Force to take advantage of the latest industry expertise, innovation and financing models to make its installations more energy efficient.

"What the ESCOs bring to the table is their truly unique experience in the field," said Maj. Daniel Diaz Jr., energy branch chief at AFSPC. "They can find the best opportunities for energy efficiencies, develop a plan to execute and are responsible for operation and maintenance long term."

Because facilities systems are more sophisticated than ever, maintenance agreements and warranties are a crucial benefit of ESPCs, which range from 10 to a maximum of 25 years.

"Unlike the 1950s and 60s -- when buildings were pretty basic -- we now have facilities with complex systems and sophisticated controls," said Fox Theriault, energy analyst for AFSPC. "The ESCOs come in with that expertise and, because they install the latest technology, are maintaining it for us, the workload on the local base shops is alleviated. If we have a problem with a system, we call the ESCO under the warranty."

After the audit is complete, AFCEC will review Schneider's recommendations and offer feedback. A final proposal will then be submitted, reviewed and negotiated. Work will begin after the final proposal is accepted by the Air Force.

"This is the first of four bases in space command where we are exploring ESPCs. The other three have been identified, and we are looking forward to the Peterson project to apply successes and lessons learned to future projects," Theriault said. "We felt that building this team from base level, using people from the major command and AFCEC, the synergy we brought together and the expertise that we had, was the way to build a good program."

The kickoff meeting for the IGA is targeted for mid to late May. AFCEC is currently pursuing potential ESPC opportunities valued at approximately $416 million by the end of calendar 2016.

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