Covington Honored for Energy Innovation, Savings at State Awards Ceremony
The City of Covington was a big winner this week, receiving the 2016 Kentucky Excellence in Energy Leadership award at the Kentucky Governor's Conference on Energy and the Environment awards ceremony.
“We are extremely honored to receive this award. We thank the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet in recognizing the City’s hard work and energy conservation efforts,” said Mayor Sherry Carran, who accepted the award.
Each year, the Energy and Environment Cabinet recognizes individuals and organizations that are making positive contributions to Kentucky’s environment.
Covington was recognized for its conservation initiatives and was one of the first local governments in the state to implement energy savings performance contracting. The City initiated a $2.25 million project to modernize and enhance its city hall, police headquarters, public works, fire station, parking garages, and several traffic signals.
In the four years from the implementation completion date, Covington has realized close to $700,000 in savings from the investments that were made including HVAC, lighting and water conservation improvements, according to a news release.
Additionally, the City of Covington became the first community to establish an Energy Project Assessment District (EPAD) and the first in the state of Kentucky with a completed EPAD project.
The City’s EPAD project included energy upgrades to the Ivy Knoll senior citizen’s center such as solar panels, LED lighting, elevator modernization and high efficiency heating and cooling controls. The Greater Cincinnati Energy Alliance functioned as the City’s program administrator for the project.
The Ivy Knoll project represents the fastest any community has gone from EPAD legislation to project implementation in the nation.
Located at 800 Highland Avenue, Ivy Knoll improved the comfort and convenience for its senior residents while also reducing the building’s energy footprint through the implementation of these improvements. Thanks to Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing, the center was able to fund the energy efficiency upgrades.
PACE financing allows private commercial property owners the ability to repay the funds for an eligible energy project via a voluntary special improvement assessment on the property tax bill. Through PACE financing, the Ivy Knoll owners were able to select improvements that had the highest energy savings but also came with the higher upfront costs for the 7-story, all-electric building.
“It’s great to witness the positive results of the Ivy Knoll EPAD project. We’re excited to see what future impacts the program will provide in energy conservation throughout Covington,” said development manager Donald Warner.
Photo (left to right): Lt. Governor Jenean Hampton, Mayor Sherry Carran, Covington Development Manager Donald Warner and Secretary of the Kentucky Energy and Environment Cabinet Charles G. Snavely (provided)