The Food and Drug Administration's Jefferson Labs Realizes Great Success with UESC

August 28, 2007

The Jefferson Laboratories Engineering Team at the Department of Health and Human Services, Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) Jefferson Laboratories has reduced energy consumption by 32 percent on a square foot basis when compared to a FY 1990 baseline, and by 17 percent on a square foot basis when compared to a 2003 baseline. Carbon emissions were reduced by 28 percent from FY 2003 to FY 2006. Much of these savings are attributable to a utility energy services contract (UESC) that has installed $10.1 million of energy and water efficiency projects between 2004 and 2007, with another $2.4 million planned for the future.

Jefferson Laboratories (JL) includes the National Center for Toxicological Research (NCTR) and the Arkansas Regional Laboratory (ARL) Office of Regulatory Affairs, and resides on a 500-acre campus in Jefferson, Arkansas thirty miles south of Little Rock. The facility was a military installation until 1971 when it was deeded to the FDA. It consists of approximately 870,000 square feet of space in 38 buildings. There are more than 250,000 square feet of laboratory or animal holding areas requiring 100 percent outside air with stringent temperature and humidity control. As a fifty year old renovated facility, there have been many opportunities to implement energy saving projects and incorporate energy conservation into new construction and renovation projects.

In 1999, with the approval and support of the JL management, a UESC was initiated with Entergy Arkansas, Inc., the electricity provider. Between 1998 and 2003 the team initiated eight task orders with a total cost of $2.2 million and estimated annual energy savings of 90,500 Btu per square foot and $490,000. The projects included a comprehensive energy audit, cooling tower construction, enhanced energy procurement strategies, power factor correction, district cooling system design, heat recovery, high efficiency lighting, and energy management control system upgrades.

From 2004 to 2007, the JL Team continued with their UESC to accumulate additional annual savings of $621,000 and 57,450 Btu per square foot with projects such as extensive heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) renovations of large laboratories, district cooling system construction, variable air volume system installation in large office areas, and automated lighting controls.

The implementation of the UESC with the local utility began a whole new institutionalization of energy efficiency. The Team presented large scale project ideas to the top-level management that included life cycle cost analyses with strong economic and investment information. This high level of exposure to the Team's energy and water efficiency efforts and the partnership motivated the team to look closer at how space is managed and has enabled the team to complete a broader range of energy conservation opportunities.

In fact, the JL Team plans to implement additional task orders with projected annual savings of $256,691 and 35,500 Btu per square foot. These savings will result in a projected energy rate reduction of 25 percent from the 2003 baseline. The future projects include installation of high efficiency boilers, upgrade to overhead and underground utilities and piping, completion of a new comprehensive energy audit, and use of grey water strategies.

The results achieved by the JL Team can be attributed to alternative financing, strategic planning, implementing a comprehensive district energy system, and using a sophisticated environmental management control system to its fullest potential. Not only has the JL Team saved valuable dollars for the Jefferson Labs, they have created a new atmosphere on campus as all projects are now viewed with an eye toward energy or water efficiency. The priority of energy efficiency has come to the forefront in engineering and operations management, and the publicity that JL personnel has received for their efforts through awareness campaigns and award programs has further instilled this consciousness for efficiency and savings.

For more information, please contact Ted Kozak, Chief, Design and Construction at Jefferson Laboratories, at 870-543-7356.