The Southern Company system is partnering with the US General Services Administration (GSA) to increase energy efficiency in 12 federal buildings across Georgia. Solutions from the Southern Company system will focus on three key areas – energy efficiency, resiliency, and greenhouse gas reductions — and are expected to reduce GSA’s annual energy and water costs by nearly $3.3 million.
Southern Company subsidiaries Atlanta Gas Light and PowerSecure are coordinating the improvements, planned for completion in 2024.
The GSA announced the award of the $117 million Utility Energy Service Contract, which is part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s Climate Smart Buildings Initiative. The improvements are expected to enhance building performance and efficiency, while reducing operating costs by approximately 45%. In addition, carbon emissions are expected to be reduced by 18,000 to 21,000 metric tons per year across all 12 GSA buildings.
The project will replace and modernize equipment, such as chillers and boiler plants, air and water distribution, and direct digital control systems. In addition, improvements will also include the conversion of more than 60,000 light fixtures to LED technology, as well as the installation of high-efficiency water fixtures. The project is expected to cut energy consumption by 40-50% across the 12 sites.
Also included is a $944,000 grant from the Department of Energy to reclaim water for use inside the buildings, and $900,000 in utility rebates.
Last year, Georgia Power announced its first sustainability bond, and the first sustainability bond for a domestic utility in the United States. Bond proceeds will be allocated to fund the company’s environmental, renewable, and social initiatives. The 3.25% coupon represents the lowest 30-year coupon for a publicly traded bond ever issued by any affiliate of Southern Company, Georgia Power’s parent company.
Just this month, the United States House of Representatives passed the Inflation Reduction Act, essentially making the country’s most ambitious energy and climate policy on record law.
The legislation includes nearly $370 billion for energy incentives and programs, and it passed the House across party lines 220-207 with every Democrat voting in favor while four Republicans did not vote.It is the second significant piece of legislation aiding US sustainability efforts that Congress passed in less than a year. The $1 trillion infrastructure bill includes billions toward energy-efficient buildings, water, and nationwide electric vehicle charging stations.