Research

UK CAER Outreach Nets Big Savings for Kentucky Communities

UK CAER is working in communities across the Commonwealth to help local governmental agencies reduce energy bills.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 6, 2018) — Greg Copley works for the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research (CAER) but you are more likely to run into him in Hazard or Hopkinsville than you are in Lexington.

Energy savings, as he notes, is important to every community across the state, and Copley is determined to make sure that message is delivered — personally — to as many communities as he can.

Copley serves as an outreach and technical coordinator for the Local Government Energy Retrofit Program, working with local and county government officials to implement performance savings conservation measures at public facilities across the Commonwealth. The program is supported by the Kentucky Department for Local Government and the Department for Energy Development and Independence.

He assists local government officials with a variety of administrative and technical tasks associated with energy savings performance contracting. If local governments decide to pursue an energy savings contract, the agreement ensures that those communities will reduce their energy costs enough to pay for the infrastructure and equipment upgrades to local facilities.

From thoroughly explaining the process to reviewing the request for proposal (RFP) to working with vendors to ensure everyone is on the same page, Copley is there, aiding and assisting Kentucky communities.

And the results are speaking for themselves. Boyle County has completed its energy savings program, resulting in $1.4 million in total capital avoidance; $45,000 in annual energy savings; and $41,000 in annual operational savings. The Carter County experience has resulted in nearly $900,000 in total capital avoidance; $34,000 in annual energy savings; $40,000 in annual operational savings; $16,000 in fuel savings; and nearly $20,000 in annual vehicle fleet savings.

Twenty-seven projects are underway in communities across the Commonwealth. Kentucky counties in which projects are underway include: Barren, Boyd, Boyle, Caldwell, Carter, Cumberland, Floyd, Grant, Graves, Greenup, Harlan, Marshall, Mason, McCracken, Morgan, Muhlenberg, Owen, Powell, Pulaski and Todd.

“President Capilouto often says that UK’s campus is the Commonwealth,” said Rodney Andrews, director of UK CAER. “Greg Copley lives that mission. He is constantly on the road, crisscrossing Kentucky to generate real savings for Kentucky communities. It is a great example of what partnerships can do and what a flagship, land-grant university should do.”

photo of Greg Copley
UK CAER's Greg Copley serves as an outreach and technical coordinator for the Local Government Energy Retrofit Program, working with local government officials to implement performance savings conservation measures at public facilities across the state.

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