THE NCAT MISSION
Helping people by championing small-scale,
local, and sustainable solutions to reduce poverty,
promote healthy communities, and protect
natural resources.

NCAT Energy Services

Ryan Dave examines heating Superior HospitalNCAT energy engineers are experts in sustainable energy practices and offer design and consulting services for energy efficiency projects. Our engineers have considerable experience in auditing energy usage, analyzing savings opportunities, and facilitating energy conservation investments. Several NCAT energy analysts are professional engineers with decades of utility conservation program experience. NCAT can add value to your energy efficiency project by helping you:

  • Maximize Energy Savings
  • Design Energy Efficient Systems
  • Market Energy Efficiency Services
  • Maximize Rebates and Incentives
  • Facilitate Projects
  • Meet Company Energy Efficiency Requirements and Green Standards

 

 

 

NCAT Utility Services

NCAT works with utility companies, their customers, and trade allies to provide technical assistance.

In a partnership with NorthWestern Energy in Montana, NCAT facilitates energy and natural gas conservation programs for NorthWestern Energy customers. These programs provide rebates and incentives to institute savings measures in new or existing facilities. NCAT energy engineers provide the following services:

 

NCAT Energy Services Brochure
Northwestern Energy Programs

Design and Consulting Services

butte_high_school

Whether working on new construction or improving an existing structure, NCAT can help design a state-of-the-art green facility that uses resources wisely, is energy-efficient, and is cost effective.

For example, the NCAT energy team helped develop a grant application for the Butte School District No. 1 for the Quality School Facility Grant Program. NCAT energy engineers created eQUEST energy simulation models to estimate the energy savings expected from installing energy efficient boilers and windows throughout the district. The energy team also evaluated the efficiency of completing the district-wide lighting retrofit project. As a result of the grant application, the Butte School District received over $350,000 in funds for energy improvements.

semitool The energy team also worked with the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) to perform an energy audit of the Semitool facility in Kalispell, Montana.

The audit included an energy analysis of the HVAC and lighting systems. NCAT energy engineers created several models of energy conservation options for the facility.

 

Click here to request NCAT energy engineering assistance or call NCAT toll-free at (866)723-8677

 

 

NCAT Facilitates NorthWestern Energy’s Incentives and Rebates in Montana

world_bulb

NorthWestern Energy’s Montana customers can take advantage of commercial rebates and Business Partners Program incentives by contacting NCAT energy efficiency engineers to audit their facility, recommend energy efficiency projects, and facilitate rebates and incentive applications.

Rebates are relatively straightforward, although they do not include all possible control and equipment strategies.

NWE offers energy conservation rebates for a wide variety of projects for their natural gas and electrical customers, including:

  • Lighting
  • Irrigation
  • Electric Motors
  • Motor Rewind Rebate Program
  • High Efficiency Boilers, Furnaces, and Water Heaters
  • Stack Heat Exchangers
  • Refrigeration Heat Recovery
  • Boiler Tune-ups
  • Energy Management System Optimization
  • Water Tank and Pipe Insulation
  • Boiler Pipe and Heating Duct Sealing and Insulation
  • Ceiling and Exterior Wall Insulation
  • High Efficiency Windows
  • Energy Star Programmable Thermostat

NCAT energy analysts will assist you in every part of the incentive and rebate process.

 

E+ Business Partners Program

vent

Measures that are not covered by standard rebates can often be included in Business Partners Proposals. To qualify for incentives, conservation measures must meet a “total resource cost test.” Custom incentives are based on the value of the energy savings to NWE’s system, and can provide a much shorter return on investment for participating customers. Projects can include improvements to:

  • Heating Ventilation and cooling (HVAC) systems
  • Refrigeration
  • Air Handling
  • Pumping Systems

Click here to request NCAT energy engineering assistance
or call NCAT toll-free at (866)723-8677

Please note: To participate in the rebate or incentive process for NorthWestern Energy programs, you must first complete a Participation Agreement and fax it to: (406) 494-2905 or email it to: nwebp@ncat.org

 

Trade Ally Support

NCAT works with dozens of engineering firms, electrical contractors, mechanical contractors, controls vendors, and equipment vendors to support the development of conservation projects across NorthWestern Energy’s service territory.

These trade allies often respond to requests for proposals from customers who are participating in NorthWestern Energy’s programs.

NCAT also provides support to these entities on projects that they have developed on their own.

Our success depends on these companies and their ability to design and implement conservation measures that meet the program criteria.

In turn, these trade allies benefit from our marketing and training services as well as our ability to simplify participation in NorthWestern Energy programs.

NCAT Energy Services News and Updates

Energy Corps Members, Alumni Address Wastewater Sustainability Issues

 

Arkansas Energy Corps AmeriCorps Project Coordinator Dan Dean attended the Environmental Educators Networking Meeting on December 3rd, 2013 at the Westside Wastewater Treatment Plant in Fayetteville.
Dan writes:

It’s always refreshing to see how many people in Northwest Arkansas are working to address issues of sustainability in our communities. That was certainly the case at the recent Environmental Educators Networking Meeting at the Westside Wastewater Treatment Plant in Fayetteville. Twenty-one representatives from the University of Arkansas Sustainability Consortium, University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service, Beaver Watershed Alliance, Illinois River Watershed Partnership, Ozark Natural Science Center, Botanical Garden of the Ozarks, and other organizations were brought together by Washington County Environmental Affairs to tour the plant and discuss current projects.

Touring the City of Fayetteville's Westside Wastewater Treatment Plant. Photo by Dan Dean, NCAT.

Touring the City of Fayetteville’s Westside Wastewater Treatment Plant. Photo by Dan Dean, NCAT.

I was particularly delighted to realize that more than a quarter of the attendees were current and former Energy Corps (EC) members. The meeting’s organizer, Leah Saffian, is now an Environmental Educator with Washington County Environmental Affairs, as are Rob Moore and two-term EC alumna Liz Hill, who began her position last month as a joint venture between Boston Mountain Solid Waste District and the City of Fayetteville. Dana Smith, now Sustainability Coordinator for Fayetteville Public Schools, shared news about the district’s Green Teams. Current EC member Elana Harrison represented her host site, the University of Arkansas Applied Sustainability Center.

The facility tour led us step-by-step through the process of screening, filtering, clarifying, disinfecting, and aerating the water before it is released into Goose Creek of the Illinois River watershed. According to the City’s website, the facility is designed to process an average daily flow of 10 million gallons per day. We also learned about Fayetteville’s new biosolids drying operation, which uses the sun for approximately 95 percent of the energy required to dry the material. After additional drying with a thermal gas dryer, the material can be sold to farmers and residents as soil enhancement. Because of the new biosolids management strategy, the facility has significantly reduced the volume being hauled from the plant to the landfillfrom five truckloads of undried biosolids down to just one truckload.

I imagine most people don’t give much thought to what happens to the water they use after it leaves their home or as it washes over driveways and parking lots. I certainly didn’t know the complexity of the treatment process before the tour, though I had heard that the Greenhouse Gas Emissions report compiled by Liz Hill in her first EC term identified the plant as the biggest consumer of electricity of all City facilities. I do believe that awareness of water quality and other environmental issues will grow further as the leaders who attended the meeting continue their work in our community.

Visit www.energycorps.org for more information about the ways Energy Corps members help educate citizens and address sustainability issues in their communities.

 

Arkansas Energy Corps Members Learn to Help Communities Thrive

Arkansas Energy Corps AmeriCorps Project Coordinator Dan Dean attended the 2013 Sustainable Communities Leadership Summit in North Little Rock, Ark., on Oct. 16, along with Energy Corps (EC) members Elana Harrison and Jodi Nimmo. Elana helped organize the Summit for her host site, the University of Arkansas Sam M. Walton College of Business Applied Sustainability Center. Dan writes:

I was pleased to see fellow EC alumni Shannon Joyce, Carlos Ochoa, and Dana Smith when I arrived at the Summit. It is a testament to the success of the EC program that these individuals continue to work tirelessly towards social, environmental, and economic sustainability in Arkansas.

Presentation at Sustainable Communities Leadership Summit

Photo courtesy University of Arkansas Applied Sustainability Center

The first keynote speaker, Jean Russell, spoke passionately about her concept of thrivability, the need to think beyond sustainability—which often is measured quantitatively—and consider ways to achieve a high quality of life for all people. John Robert Smith, Co-chair of Transportation for America, followed with a thoughtful presentation about the role city design plays in achieving that goal. I was pleased to hear that, according to a recent survey, cities implementing Smart Growth policies see an average of ten times the tax revenue of those that don’t and 47 percent of survey respondents would prefer to live in a mixed-use neighborhood. These factors point to the economic and quality-of-life benefits that thoughtful urban design can bring.

At the “Rural Communities and Renewable Energy” breakout session, I learned that about 9 percent of US energy comes from renewable sources and of that 9 percent, about 4.6 percent is from biomass. The agricultural sector consumes 7 percent of the energy used in Arkansas and biofuels are a growing opportunity in the state, as further evidenced by the afternoon “Sustainability in Small Towns” breakout session.

As a bicycling advocate, the “Active Transportation” session resonated with me as holding great potential for reduced energy consumption, lower fuel bills, and a happier life. In 1969, 50 percent of children walked or biked to school. In 2009, only 13 percent did, even though half of school trips driven are between one-quarter and one-half miles. Attendants learned that a school district can save $45,000 by eliminating just one bus route, a further potential benefit of walk/bike-to-school programs.

More than 200 participants attended the Summit, including decision makers and city employees from Louisiana, Texas, and Oklahoma. All of the participants were able to share what their cities are doing to promote economic, social, and environmental thrivability at the City Showcase.

Elana’s thoughts on the conference can be found on the Energy Corps website at www.energycorps.org/blog/default/growing-a-movement-one-city-at-a-time.

Register Today for Harvesting Clean Energy Conference

HCE_logo_071213Registration is now open for the 2014 Harvesting Clean Energy Conference to be held in Helena, Montana, on February 4-6, 2014.  Plan to join us to learn all about strategies to maximize local job creation and the economic benefits to be had from developing our clean energy resources.  Experts will discuss clean energy projects that can help cut costs and produce power or feedstocks, and how to create good, local, clean energy jobs and economic benefits.  Click here to find more information and to register.