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High-bay lighting project nets $49,119 rebate from CPS Energy

  • Published
  • By Robert Goetz
  • Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Public Affairs
CPS Energy of San Antonio has again rewarded Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph for its energy conservation efforts - this time for a $320,000 project to replace high-bay low-efficiency lighting in 11 of the base's hangars with fluorescent light fixtures.

Last week, Yvonne Haecker, the utility company's energy solutions manager, presented Col. Scott Peel, 902nd Mission Support Group commander, and other JBSA-Randolph representatives with a $49,119 mock check representing a rebate that will reduce the base's utility bill.

"The CPSE rebate program is a win-win for both the utility and Randolph," Ruben Ramos, base utilities manager, said. "Rebates currently received help to lower the actual monthly payment to the utility, which in the big picture frees up capital. The utility in turn benefits from the energy reduction across their distribution system, as well as lower critical peak demand times during the summer months."

A crew from E Flow Electric Inc. of San Antonio replaced nearly 2,400 high-pressure sodium and metal halide lights in the hangars with fluorescent lighting during November and December.

Ramos said the new lighting will save about $30,000 per year, contributing to the base's energy conservation efforts, which he said has resulted in savings of about $300,000 per year for the last four years.

"It will also reduce our peak demand during the summer," he said. "If we lower our demand cost more, we will be paying less during the year."

Bruce Dschuden, 902nd Civil Engineer Squadron resource efficiency manager, said the project will also improve the quality of light in the hangars.

"This has been a great project; there is no downside," he said. "The occupants of those hangars are all very happy. There's more high-quality lighting in their space. With fluorescent lighting, there is better color rendition."

Not only are the fluorescent lights more efficient, Dschuden said, they can be turned off when natural light is sufficient.

"The old lighting took 15 to 20 minutes to reach full brightness, so they were always left on during the workday," he said. "Fluorescent lights reach full brightness right away. They also burn cooler, which will improve the comfort level inside the hangars."

Dschuden said he anticipates further savings with the replacement of lighting fixtures in 10 more buildings.

He said another project planned for this fiscal year is the replacement of some 27,000 lights in the base's office buildings.

"We're constantly looking for opportunities as they come up," Dschuden said.

A long-term energy conservation project that continues to progress is the base's chilled-water loop, a system of centralized water chillers, thermal energy storage units and piping designed to meet the air-conditioning needs of much of JBSA-Randolph's commercial sector. Much of the system is already complete.

The rebate presented last week is one of several CPS Energy credits JBSA-Randolph has received in the last few years. The most recent one came in November - a $26,666 rebate for summer energy conservation.

"JBSA is working with leadership and CPSE to explore possible ways to reinvest rebate dollars back into future energy retrofit projects to buy down or perpetuate the process," Ramos said.

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