For Immediate Release: December 11, 2012
Media Contact: Ma Eliza Caliolio - 916-654-4989


Tuolumne County Energy Retrofit Projects Translate to Savings

The County of Tuolumne recently improved its energy efficiency and reduced its carbon footprint thanks to federal stimulus funds.

This Sierra Nevada County installed energy efficient technologies at 10 county-owned buildings including the administration building and the main library located in Sonora.

More than 2,000 old interior and exterior light fixtures in 10 county building lamps were removed and retrofitted with approximately 1,885 energy efficient T8 and T5 compact fluorescent lights, and/or light emitting diodes lights. These energy efficient lighting technologies use less energy, require less maintenance, and provide a greater quality of light for staff and the public.

In addition to the lighting upgrades, new heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems (HVAC) were installed to replace older, less efficient ones in the main library and in the sheriff's office.

The energy improvements for the County of Tuolumne are estimated to save 298,300 kilowatt hours or the equivalent of $17,000 in annual energy cost. The estimated reduction of greenhouse gas emissions are expected to be 103 tons per year.

Completed in June, the County of Tuolumne's lighting retrofit and HVAC projects were funded with $289,891 by a Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) of the U.S. Department of Energy under the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act.

Administered by the California Energy Commission, these federal grants contributed to the energy efficiency goals of small cities and counties.

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Federal stimulus funds to small cities and counties awarded under the ARRA's Energy Efficiency Conservation Block Grants (EECBG) and administered by the Energy Commission are providing more than $32 million to more than 270 eligible localities throughout California. Large cities and counties are receiving funding directly from the US DOE.

The California Energy Commission is the state's primary energy policy and planning agency. Created by the Legislature in 1974 and located in Sacramento, six basic responsibilities guide the Energy Commission as it sets state energy policy: forecasting future energy needs; licensing thermal power plants 50 megawatts or larger; promoting energy efficiency and conservation by setting the state's appliance and building efficiency standards; supporting public interest energy research that advances energy science and technology through research, development, and demonstration programs; developing renewable energy resources and alternative renewable energy technologies for buildings, industry and transportation; planning for and directing state response to energy emergencies.