Monday, June 27, 2011

report on greenburgh energy use

Seth Segall of our energy task force and Allegra Dengler, Energy Conservation Coordinator, will provide the Town Board with a report on energy consumption at the Tuesday morning Town Board work session --at 10 AM. This is a summary of their findings. The report provides the community with a good baseline to measure future progress and to understand what needs to be done. The discussion will take place at 10 AM. We need to accomplish our energy conservation, cost savings and greenhouse gas reduction goals.

Energy Consumption by Town of Greenburgh Municipal Operations 2008-2010
1) Electricity Consumption
From 2008 to 2010 the total number of kilowatt hours consumed by the Town of
Greenburgh for facilities increased from 7,882,038 KWH to 11,870,332 KWH, an
increase of 51%. This increase is mostly accounted for by the new Library which was
not in full use until 2009, and the Knollwood Road Pump Station, the Townʼs largest
electricity consumer, which was incorrectly billed for 2008 and 20091. If we exclude the
Library and Knollwood Pump Station, Town KWH consumption declined 2% from 2008
to 2010 (from 7,765,275 KWH to 7,645,876 KWH) despite 2010 having 27% more
cooling degree days than 2008 which increased summer air conditioning demand. This
shows the Town is having some small success in holding down electricity consumption
(See Figure 1).
While most Town facilities show only minor fluctuations (3% or less) in KWH
consumption from year to year, several facilities succeeded in making notable
reductions. Most of these were Park and Recreation Department operated facilities:
Anthony F. Veteran Park lowered consumption by 13%, Travis Hill Park by 24%,
Yosemite Park by 20%, Rumbrook Park by 37%, and the Greenburgh Nature Center by
14%. In addition, the new Library decreased consumption by 13% from 2009 to 2010.
On the other hand, two facilities significantly increased their electric consumption from
2008-2010: The Justice Court increased consumption by 7%, and Town Hall by 6%.2
Total Town electrical costs rose by $352,157 (a 24% increase) from $1,468,773 in 2008
to $1,820,930 in 2010, reflecting NYPAʼs increased price per kilowatt hour and the
increased costs of the new library (+$54,596) and the change in cost for the Knollwood
pumps (+$179,965).
2) Natural Gas Consumption
From 2008 to 2010 the Town decreased its therm consumption by 6% from 210,044
Therms to 197,835 therms, while heating degree days declined by 4% over the same
time period. In 2009 when heating degree days increased by 5%, therm consumption
increased by 1%. The small consumption increase during a colder winter, and the
1 See Appendix 1
2 Town Hall increased consumption in the winter, spring and summer of 2010 compared
with 2008 (but decreased comparative consumption in the fall). Peak Town Hall
consumption in 2010 was in July and August. The Justice Court showed increased
usage for 8 of the 12 months of 2010. Justice Court usage peaks were in January-
February and July-September.
larger decrease during a warmer winter suggests the town has had some success in
reducing heating energy costs. (See Figure 2).
The largest decreases in therm consumption from 2008-2010 were by the Theodore D.
Young Community Center (-20%) the DPW Garages (-9%), Anthony F. Veteran Park
(-8%), the Ridge Road Barn (-11%). Itʼs interesting to note that two of the four biggest
reducers were again Parks and Recreation facilities.
Not all Town facilities decreased their therm use, however. Town Hall increased therm
consumption by +10% despite the warmer 2010 winter (and by +13% during the colder
2009 winter.) The Knollwood Road Facilities decreased therms (-24%) during the
colder 2009 winter and increased therms (+8%) during the warmer 2010 winter, the only
facility showing a counter-intuitive consumption swing.
The total cost for natural gas for the Town for 2008-2010 deceased 48% from $287,083
to $150,598. This reflects both the 6% reduction in consumption and the decreased
price of natural gas from 2008-2010. (New York state commercial prices for natural gas
fell from a high of $15.22 dollars per thousand cubic feet in July, 2008 to a low of $8.82
per thousand cubic feet in August, 2010.)
3) Gasoline and Diesel Fuel
The Town has had modest success in reducing vehicle fleet energy consumption by
2.5% over the past two years. The vehicle fleet reduced overall gasoline and diesel fuel
consumption from 302,500 gallons (2008) to 300,981 gallons (2009), to 294,788 (2010).
(See Figure 3) The price of vehicle fuels was $886,126 in 2008, $537,515 in 2009 and
$659,342 in 2010, reflecting both reduced consumption and fluctuating prices per
4) Greenhouse Gas Emissions
These energy consumption reductions are equivalent to an estimated reduction in
greenhouse gas emissions of 757 metric tons of CO2e, a 2% reduction in CO2e
compared with 2008.
5) Conclusions
The good news is that in 2010 the unincorporated Town of Greenburgh decreased
electricity consumption by 2% (if one excludes the Library and Knollwood Pumps),
natural gas consumption by 6%, gasoline/diesel fuel consumption by 2.5%, and
greenhouse gas emissions by 2% from 2008 baseline levels. These decreases are
moves in the right direction in terms of energy conservation, reduced taxpayer costs,
and greenhouse gas emissions. The bad news is that these reductions are insufficient
to meet proposed greenhouse gas reduction targets of 15% by 2015 and 20% by 2020.
A comprehensive Climate Action Plan will be needed to accomplish those goals.
Figure 1
Electricity Consumption (Kilowatt Hours)
* Revised Total = Total Consumption - (Library + Knollwood Pump Station)
Total Revised Total*
2008 2009 2010
Figure 2
Natural Gas Consumption (Therms)
Note: 2009 had 5% more heating degree days than 2008. 2010 had 4% fewer heating
degree days than 2008.
2008 2009 2010
Figure 3
Gasoline and Diesel Fuel Usage (Gallons)
2008 2009 2010
Energy Costs (Dollars)
Appendix 1
Electricity Gasoline Natural Gas Total
2008 2009 2010
Knollwood Road Electrical Consumption 2008-2010 (Metered Kilowatt Hours)
The Water Departmentʼs Knollwood Road facility is the Townʼs single largest consumer
of electricity, but itʼs impossible to make annual comparisons of consumption due to
erratic NYPA metering (see below).
2008 2009 2010
January 104,800 2,400 253,600
February 274,400 2,400 1,600
March 292,800 2,400 2,400
April 252,000 2,400 2,400
May 297,600 2,400 1,600
June -1,103,200 264,800 1,202,400
July 3,200 283,200 401,600
August 4,000 271,200 367,200
September 3,200 319,200 368,000
October 3,200 268,200 284,000
November 2,400 240,800 212,000
December 2,400 245,600 259,200
Total 136,800 1,904,800 3,356,000