Water forum addresses energy costs

The threat of privatization and a public demand for cost-effective, streamlined services is forcing municipal water and wastewater systems across the United States to look for ways to reduce their overhead. With the cost of electric power often representing 15 to 30 percent of a water utility`s operating and management budget, many are seeking ways to reduce energy costs.

WaterWorld magazine has teamed with EPRI and the Department of Energy Motor Challenge program to sponsor the Energy Efficiency Forum for the Water & Wastewater Industry.

The forum is designed for engineers, consultants, operators and owners of water and wastewater utilities. It will be held Aug. 29-31 at the Catamaran Hotel in San Diego, Calif.

Changes in the electric power industry, and how those changes might impact the way municipalities buy power for their water systems, will be a key topic at the forum. Papers to be presented include the development of a comprehensive energy strategy by the East Bay Municipal Utility District and Automated Power Exchange`s experience with power marketing in California.

Richard Jamieson of Powerware Solutions, corporate sponsor of the Energy Efficiency Forum, will present a workshop designed to help municipal water utilities take advantage of electric power deregulation. Jamieson advocates cooperative relationships between water and electric utilities.

“As can be seen in any competitive industry, coordination between sellers and buyers results in efficiency improvements on both sides of the transaction, enhancing the competitive position of both buyer and seller,” Jamieson said.

EPRI will host a roundtable discussion on the California Energy Commission`s PIER Program, which is a direct result of electric utility deregulation.

Other topics of the forum include conducting energy audits at water/wastewater treatment plants, pump and motor optimization programs, and on-site generation of power using biogas as a byproduct of the wastewater treatment process.

For more information about the 1999 Energy Efficiency Forum, contact: Laura Boland, EEF Conference Coordinator, Tel: 918-831-9179; Fax: 918-831-9776, or by e-mail at lboland@pennwell.com.

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