Energy Partner spotlight: Joint Water Commission

During hot summer and cold winter days, we all use more electricity. To help keep power reliable, affordable and sustainable, PGE’s Energy Partner program pays business customers to reduce or shift their energy use during these peak periods.

The Joint Water Commission (JWC) is the primary drinking water supplier in Washington County, Oregon, and is responsible for treating, transmitting and storing potable water for approximately 365,000 customers. Handling up to 75 million gallons of water a day, JWC knows how energy and water are intertwined and realizes the importance of saving both resources.

The big picture

JWC wasn't sure they could participate in Energy Partner, but PGE worked with them to determine the electrical loads they could reduce or shift. Knowing JWC had full control over their participation, with plenty of advance notice for events and the option to not participate in any event was reassuring.

Together, JWC, PGE and EnerNOC created a customized energy plan for JWC that includes a full shutdown of the plant for a few hours at a time during the winter, and reducing the use of selected pumps in the summer based on production needs. JWC thought this was the ideal solution for its facility.

“Setup was flawless and it happened quickly, said JWC Assistant Water Manager Chris Wilson. "EnerNOC handled installation with PGE and those of us at the plant had nothing to do but let them in the gate.”

As a participant in the Energy Partner program, JWC also gained valuable insight into its energy use with free, 24/7 access to real-time, high-resolution power monitoring tools they find useful for load profiling, facility benchmarking and proactive facility maintenance.

“We learned a standby backup power generator we are completing can keep us running at 100 percent most of the year,” said Wilson. “We wouldn't have known that without the complementary energy monitoring that came with being an Energy Partner.”

The results

In its first winter of participation, JWC reduced energy costs and generated extra revenue to improve its bottom line. By participating in the Energy Partner program, JWC is putting power back on the grid during peak times when it is most needed, demonstrating sensible stewardship of public resources, and helping to ensure reliable, responsible energy for Oregon.

You can learn more about the program and view videos about other companies turning small changes into big rewards.

To find out if Energy Partner is right for you, talk to your PGE representative or request a free, no-obligation consultation.