The City of Montpelier, VT, developed and constructed a hot water district heating system to serve city, state, federal, and private buildings within the community. The heat source for the hot water system is a state-owned biomass-fired boiler. To successfully complete this project, Montpelier turned to Ever-Green Energy to work with the city and develop the business structures, customer contracts, energy services rate structure, and community relations plan for the development of the district energy system. Ever-Green Energy also designed the hot water pipe system installed in the city streets. Project development included reaching out to the private business community to include them as customers of the district energy system.
Ever-Green Energy worked with city leadership to develop a system plan that extended beyond the initial scale to serve private and public buildings in a more cost effective manner while also eliminating oil combustion and greenhouse gas emissions at many local businesses.
Development of the district energy system occurred in a fully developed downtown district corridor. Customers, city leadership, and the general community had significant concerns about the potential negative impact of implementing the district system through downtown. Ever-Green Energy worked with city leadership to integrate community concerns and minimize the impact of implementation throughout construction.
Ever-Green Energy’s Role: Ever-Green Energy was selected for this project based on a wide range of capabilities, including business planning, system start-up and commissioning, and operations management. Our team provided the City of Montpelier and their partners with design assistance, training, and customer acquisition support as part of a comprehensive approach to getting this system launched in an effective and sustainable manner. Ever-Green Energy continues to provide advisory services for the system.
- Reduced air emissions from fuel combustion in downtown Montpelier by as much as 11 tons per year.
- Replacement of approximately 300,000 gallons of oil per year between the state and downtown buildings as a prime fuel source with locally/regionally produced wood chips keeping that economic activity in the northeast.
- Fuel cost stabilization for city government and the school department allowing tax dollars to potentially be redirected toward services or infrastructure rather than to pay rising oil prices.
- An economic development opportunity in downtown Montpelier by providing a cleaner and potentially cheaper source of heat for private building owners.
- The removal of many private oil furnaces and underground fuel oil storage tanks to be removed from potential flood areas.
- 2011 project kick off
- 2013 partial operation began
- 2014 completion of new biomass-fired hot water district heating system and full system operation
Stakeholders: City of Montpelier, Montpelier Public Schools, State of Vermont, US Department of Energy, Vermont Clean Energy Development Fund, National Renewable Energy Laboratory, Vermont Economic Development Authority, private customers
Technologies Implemented: hot water district heating, biomass, advanced leak detection
“Retaining a firm that has been through it before to serve as a guide is a must. We worked with Ever-Green Energy from St. Paul, and their advice, business planning, and experience was essential.”
William Frasier, Montpelier City Manager
“Montpelier’s Pipe Dream,” Biomass Magazine, March 9, 2014