MWRA’s Long-Term Sustainability Program has won a national award from The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) and the Alliance for Water Efficiency (AWE), in recognition of exceptional efficiency programs that save both energy and water.
“These awards highlight the huge potential for savings when you combine water and energy efficiency together,” said Steven Nadel, Executive Director of ACEEE.
MWRA’s Long-Term Sustainability Program originated when the agency was established in 1984. First developed as only a water efficiency effort, the program has expanded over time to include:
- Water demand management, conservation programs, leak detection, local pipeline maintenance and repair initiatives. These efforts have reduced average water system withdrawals from 340 million gallons per day in 1980 to less than 200 million gallons per day in 2012.
- Renewable energy and on-site power generation. About 45% of MWRA’s total energy cost profile is derived from renewable sources. The use of wind, hydroelectric, solar power and methane-generated steam has netted energy savings and revenue totaling approximately $177 million since 2001.
- In-house practices. Facility energy audits, process optimization, energy-focused design for new facilities, competitive bidding for power supplies and the use of greener technologies in power, vehicles and computing save almost $2M annually.
“We are delighted to be recognized nationally for our sustainable practices,” said MWRA Executive Director Fred Laskey. “MWRA is, at its core, an environmental agency and we will continue to work aggressively to use our resources efficiently and reduce the environmental impacts of our daily operations.”
MWRA has received the Leading By Example Award from the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs in 2007 and 2011 in recognition of its renewable energy generation on Deer Island, installation of solar, wind, and hydroelectric power at a number of facilities, recycling efforts, and alternative fuel vehicles and diesel retrofits.
MWRA has also received awards for its renewable programs from the Massachusetts Energy Consumers Alliance, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.