Energy Efficient Business Contributes to City Savings

3 years 2 months 2 weeks ago March 07, 2014 Mar 7, 2014 Friday, March 07 2014 Friday, March 07, 2014 5:08:00 PM CST in News
By: Alyssa Strickland, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - A Columbia company is making green changes that could improve the city's overall energy efficiency. It could mean savings for Columbia and its cost of electricity.

EnergyLink provides energy solutions and installations for commercial and residential businesses. After installing solar panels at Columbia Safety, an industrial and commercial supply company, EnergyLink transformed the business into Columbia's largest net zero electric consumption building. A net zero building means the structure is producing as much energy as it consumes, making the building a "Green Business."

CEO of EnergyLink Chris Ihler said the upgrade began in July 2013 and took a few months. Columbia Safety President Beau Aero said the project is something that he has cared about for some time now.

"It made sound business sense for us to look at one, making our building as efficient as possible, and two, looking at ways that we could reduce our expenses using federal and local incentives," Aero said.

The 140 solar panels are divided into three regions on the roof- the east, central, and west. The energy comes off of the roof and transfers into three inverters, known as a meter base, which is labeled to match the regions on the roof. The meter base keeps track of how much solar energy is going into the building or going back out to the city's grid. Aero said the meter tracks in real time the kilowatt [energy output] reductions that are happening at that given second.

"Any power that is generated on the roof goes directly to the grid," Aero said. "So none of it is wasted, it goes directly into the grid to be used in that moment." 

Ihler said the grid refers to the power lines that are seen above and below the ground throughout the city.

According to a report provided by EnergyLink the effectiveness of the solar panel system has saved the equivalence of 173 acres of forest, 44 passenger cars removed from the side of the road, or 11 entire homes off of the city's power grid.

"It's two-folded," Aero said. "It's about making a sound business decision, and being as environmentally friendly as possible."

Aero said the panels have also helped reduce electricity costs. Ihler said that's important because costs are rising about four percent in Columbia.

"The energy bills have been slashed," Aero said. "When you see the bills come the mail, it really starts to make sense that this is real."

According to an EnergyLink report, Columbia Safety will be saving $20, 529 per year. Aero said his electric bill is now zero.

"We're quite proud of it," Aero said. "It's been a very good decision for us, and we couldn't encourage enough people to continue with the development of that kind of system, and put as many of those in as possible."  

Aero said the interesting thing is that it's not just for one year, it's every year that the solar radiation will be converted into electricity.

"Every day I pray for sun," Aero said. "Given the fact that it's beautiful, but it's [also] because it's paying us back every time the sun is out."

Ihler said the company would be able to pay off the upgrades in four to five years.  

[Photos courtesy of Columbia Safety]

 

More News

Grid
List
KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — An Interior Ministry official says at least 18 people were killed when a suici de car... More >>
15 minutes ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 8:25:45 AM CDT in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Washington Post reports that Russia's ambassador to the U.S. has told his superiors that he and... More >>
1 hour ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 6:54:00 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Lawmakers have passed a proposal in a special session that supporters hope will bring hundreds... More >>
3 hours ago May 27, 2017 May 27, 2017 Saturday, May 27 2017 Saturday, May 27, 2017 5:13:00 AM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY – A father was sentenced in federal court Friday for threatening the attorney who represented one of his... More >>
12 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 8:04:00 PM CDT in Top Stories
OSAGE BEACH – People going to Lake of the Ozarks this Memorial Day Weekend may encounter severe weather, dampening the... More >>
12 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 7:56:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY - A motor vehicle collision left a man seriously injured Friday morning. Elmer Redcay, 62, was northbound... More >>
12 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 7:53:00 PM CDT in News
COLUMBIA - Gas prices leading up to Memorial Day Weekend went up in Mid Missouri by about ten cents. ... More >>
13 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 6:56:00 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri economic development officials have authorized more than $6 million of incentives to several businesses that... More >>
15 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 5:06:00 PM CDT in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — An Arkansas man faces up to a decade in federal prison now that he's admitted forcing a... More >>
16 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 4:28:00 PM CDT in News
CLAYTON (AP) — A St. Louis-area woman convicted in March of secretly poisoning her son with prescription medications has been... More >>
17 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 3:13:42 PM CDT in News
JEFFERSON CITY- A 16-year-old has been detained following the April murder of 63-year-old Jerry Robertson of Jefferson City. In... More >>
17 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 3:12:00 PM CDT in News
ST. CHARLES - A judge declared a mistrial in the case against Serghei Comerzan Friday afternoon. Jurors were not able... More >>
18 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 2:04:00 PM CDT in Continuous News
UPDATED 5/26/17 7:01 p.m. with new information. COLUMBIA - A 4-year-old child was taken to a hospital with life-threatening... More >>
19 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 1:20:00 PM CDT in News
BOONE COUNTY - Boone County deputies served a search warrant at 507 N. Garth Avenue in Columbia as the result... More >>
20 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 12:28:00 PM CDT in News
PLATTE COUNTY - Prosecutors plan to seek the death penalty against a 25-year-old northwest Missouri man if he is convicted... More >>
21 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 11:09:00 AM CDT in Top Stories
JEFFERSON CITY - Police have made an arrest in the investigation of a suspicious death in April. A 16-year-old... More >>
22 hours ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 10:15:00 AM CDT in Top Stories
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis Fire Department says it rescued a man after he became trapped between a... More >>
1 day ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 7:55:00 AM CDT in Top Stories
CAPE GIRARDEAU (AP) — A Cape Girardeau institute that helps autistic people will remain open despite losing its state funding.... More >>
1 day ago May 26, 2017 May 26, 2017 Friday, May 26 2017 Friday, May 26, 2017 7:26:35 AM CDT in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 71°
9am 75°
10am 78°
11am 79°
12pm 81°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

7:00a
Today Weekend
9:00a
KOMU 8 News Today
10:00a
The Voyager with Josh Garcia
8:30a
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Family Edition
9:00a
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Family Edition
9:30a
Dog Whisperer with Cesar Millan: Family Edition

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
Fast & Furious 6
7:00p
Family Guy
7:30p
Family Guy
8:00p
Bob's Burgers
8:30p
Bob's Burgers
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld