In 2011, the County adopted Sustainability Goals, including our goal for energy efficiency to "Reduce energy consumption by 30% by 2015. (using 2009 baseline)." To meet this ambitious goal, we have made energy efficiency a top priority for all building equipment decisions. As of the end of 2013, we have already reduced energy consumption in our buildings by 17%, substantial progress towards our goal! View: Energy Efficiency Progress Report: April, 2014 (PDF format).
We started by conducting an energy audit of our County's buildings and facilities. We are following the recommendations of the audit, prioritizing projects based upon which have the best potential for saving energy and money.
Here is a representative list of the major energy efficiency projects we've undertaken in recent years.
This internal county fund is used to help pay for projects recommended in our energy audit, and that help Douglas County meet our sustainability goals. Funds can be used to pay for projects that save energy and reduce maintenance costs (i.e. LED lighting) or promote the implementation of innovative sustainability solutions (i.e. renewable energy). The cost savings that result from these projects are then re-invested into the Fund. This provides a predictable and ongoing reserve of money for sustainability and energy improvement projects, eliminating the up-front budget impact to departments.