Berea Energy Cost Savings Plan
The Berea Energy Cost Savings Plan is an initiative by the City of Berea, the Kentucky Environmental Foundation, and Sustainable Berea, Inc. The goal of this plan is to reduce the total energy usage of Berea by 30% in projected growth by the year 2042. This plan involves all buildings and transportation in the city, and there are 54 possible activities recommended to achieve the goal of this initative. The plan in its entirety can be found here.
The plan has four different energy components: residential, non-residential, transportation, and city government. Each of these different areas have their own recommendations to reduce consumption to goal levels by the projected date. The recommendations themselves are divided into three separate categories: no-cost, low-cost, and investment grade recommendations.
In order to offset the costs of developing a more energy efficient system, the plan has both short-term and long-term approaches that leverage what can be realistically done now and what must wait to be implemented. In the short-term, their are two main goals of the plan: the first is to reduce Berea Municipal Utility's peak power consumption, which has the potential to save a considerable amount of money that could be used to fund plan implementation, and the second goal is to develop a renewable energy business model that will hopefully improve energy efficiency, thus saving money by creating a lower cost of energy production. In the long-term, the strategy is to develop a second financial model of utility energy generation on a megawatt scale. This will involve leveraging quickly developing energy technologies and declining development costs, combined with reduced energy demand as the plan is implemented.
This is a pioneering plan that is quite fitting for a community with such a tradition of doing things differently, better.
KEF Walks the Talk on Renewable Energy
Although not a direct part of this plan, the KEF leases some solar panels from Berea Municipal Utilities (BMU). It is this kind of environmentally conscious entrepreneurship that this plan hopes to foster. More info on the BMU Solar Farm can be found here.
Real-time energy generation data on the solar panels can be found on the above website.