A New Frontier: Expanding ESPC to New Markets

This blog is part 4 of our 5-part series exploring DOE’s ESPC Toolkit. The ESPC Accelerator was a 3-year partnership of states, local governments, and K-12 schools to expand access to energy savings performance contracting, or ESPC. ESPC is a financing mechanism that provides upfront capital for energy efficiency projects, which is then repaid by the guaranteed savings on utility bills resulting from the upgrades. Check out part 1, part 2, and part 3.

State and local organizations have historically embraced the use of energy savings performance contracts (ESPC) to finance energy efficiency upgrades in an affordable manner. Other market sectors also have the opportunity to benefit from this innovative financing strategy. Three models were developed as part of the ESPC Guide Series for underserved markets, and each explores the ESPC process, the sector’s energy efficiency potential, and successful case studies for that sector: K-12 schools, fleets and fueling infrastructure, and water resource recovery facilities. Upcoming guides are planned for applying ESPC to small projects and hospitals and healthcare facilities.

The ESPC Primer for K-12 Schools explains how schools can use ESPC to save money by improving building energy efficiency and reducing operating costs while increasing occupant comfort and productivity. The chapters provide K-12 faculty, school boards, and building managers with an introduction to ESPC benefits, specific guidance for K-12 schools on getting started, resources to support the ESPC implementation process, and several specific examples of K-12 schools that have successfully improved their buildings using an energy savings performance contract. It also includes tips and advice on performance contracting from school staff and energy industry professionals.

The ESPC Guide for Fleets and Fueling Infrastructure explores how ESPC could help reduce the barriers to vehicle fleet investment in natural gas vehicles (NGVs) and fueling infrastructure.  Following a brief overview of ESPC, this guide also presents case studies that demonstrate how cutting-edge NGV fleet projects have used ESPC and explores how the features of ESPC could be incorporated into innovative business models that reduce the barriers to NGV fleet project investment.

The newest guide is the ESPC Guide for Water Resource Recovery Facilities. This guide was specifically developed to provide decision-makers at water resource recovery facilities (WRRFs) with information, examples and resources to consider the option of energy savings performance contracting as a way to upgrade facilities with an emphasis on compliance. Coming next is a similar guide in the series focused on ESPC opportunities in hospitals and healthcare facilities.

Register now for the Expanding ESPC webinar!

Learn more about the Better Buildings Energy Savings Performance Contracting Toolkit and tools to Expand ESPC Projects to New Markets. Don’t forget to register for our series of ESPC webinars. We’ll be taking a break for the Better Buildings Summit in August, but make sure to join us in September for our final installment, Evaluating ESPC Results.