Stimulating Energy Investment in Tennessee


In 2013, OEP received a U.S. DOE State Energy Program Competitive Award to provide education, outreach, and technical assistance to local governments, K-12 schools, and public housing authorities in Tennessee in order to drive demand for energy improvement investments. From July 2014 to January 2017, OEP and a consultant, Clean Energy Solutions, Inc., provided direct education, outreach, and technical assistance to over 346 entities.

Within the award’s period of performance, the project team drove demand for energy improvement investments of over $48 million by the following local governmental entities:

  • Bradley County Schools (BCS) selected Energy Systems Group to perform the work and signed a performance contract for $16,200,000. The project was completed in June 2017; annual energy savings for the project is $1.3 million ($845,000 in annual energy savings and $455,000 in annual capital and maintenance savings).
  • Cleveland Housing Authority (CHA) worked extensively with the project team to develop the scope of work for an ESPC, draft an RFQ, and develop selection criteria. Johnson Controls International (JCI) was selected to perform the work. The $2,500,000 project includes energy conservation measures to be implemented in approximately 350 housing units, as well as installation of solar PV on CHA administration and maintenance office buildings. Estimated annual energy savings is $100,000.
  • In 2016, the City of Knoxville released a Request for Proposals related to a citywide LED conversion of nearly 30,000 streetlights. The project began in 2017, when the City started completing test/demo installations of new lights for evaluation by the City and public stakeholders. The total project was completed in November 2019 for approximately $15,000,000; these lighting improvements will save the City up to $2,000,000 in energy and maintenance costs annually and will help the City meet its new goal to reduce community greenhouse gas emissions 80% by 2050.
  • Montgomery County signed a $4,947,424 ESPC with Siemens, which included $463,874 in guaranteed annual savings over a 15 year period. The project was completed on September 27, 2017.
  • In August 2017, Williamson County Schools (WCS) requested, and the Tennessee Local Development Authority approved, a sub-allocation of Qualified Energy Conservation Bonds for this project. The bond issuance for the project ($10,115,000), which financed energy conservation measures within 13 WCS buildings, closed on September 30, 2017. The project, an ESPC with Trane that was completed in March 2019, is expected to result in annual energy savings of approximately $778,135. 

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