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Corps Adds Energy Efficiency to Specifications

At a Glance

Environmental Attributes:
The Army Corps of Engineers (ACE) is including Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) criteria for energy-efficient products in its guide specifications.

Contract Language:
The guide specificationsExit EPA Disclaimerare available online.

Key players:

Environmental Information Sources:

Results:
By using the FEMP criteria, ACE ensures that its guide specifications contain updated information on energy-efficient products.

Contact Information:
Listed at the end of the case study.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (ACE) writes procurement specifications for all construction products used by the Army, including interior electrical products. The electrical product guide specifications cover everything from cables to transformers. In response to Executive Order mandates and a federal government focus on energy efficiency, ACE includes an increasing number of energy-efficient technologies in the specifications.

Specification Development Process

In the past, when ACE updated its guide specifications, it conducted industry surveys to ascertain what types of energy-efficient electrical products were available. Then a diverse group within ACE performed standard lifecycle cost evaluations to determine the feasibility of incorporating new technologies in the specifications. Although recent budget cuts forced ACE to discontinue these reviews, the Corps still wanted to provide updated information on energy-efficient products to its procurement officials. To do so, ACE decided to use energy-efficiency criteria established by the U.S. Department of Energy's Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP). ACE will use the FEMP criteria in developing new guide specifications for the following electrical products:

The new ACE guide specifications for electrical products were scheduled for release by the end of 1999 on ACE's Web site. To view the guide specifications, click hereExit EPA Disclaimerand scroll down to "Division 16." ACE also is incorporating FEMP's energy-efficient recommendations for architectural products.

Cost Considerations

ACE's decision to pay higher initial costs for energy-efficient products will result in substantial energy and cost savings over the product's life. Some products, such as T8 lamps, have increased their market share and are no longer initially more expensive than the less efficient counterparts. In addition, because electrical products generally are a small portion of a construction contract, their cost impact is insignificant.

For more information on ACE's incorporation of FEMP's energy-efficiency recommendations into their guide specifications, contact Bob Billmyer of ACE at 202 761-8623.


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