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City of Berkeley

About the Project

The public safety building in Berkeley, California, is a 24/7 site containing fire and police administrative offices, an emergency operations center, the 911 dispatch center, and a city jail. With a focus on reducing energy use and peak energy demand and increasing energy cost savings, the City of Berkeley implemented a comprehensive lighting retrofit, replacing fluorescent lighting and ballasts with LED and updating lighting controls in offices and conference rooms to include vacancy sensors.

The project was 100% funded through incentives, grants, and the utility’s on-bill financing program, a zero-interest loan that pays the contractor up front and allows the city to pay the loan back on its monthly energy bill. The contract includes a 10-year warranty on the life of the lighting products and labor costs. The monthly loan payment is equal to or less than the energy costs saved by the retrofit.

In this project, the cost of the loan will be approximately $250,000 over 10 years. In comparison, costs for the un-conserved electricity (336,573 kWh) were estimated to result in an annual cost increase of more than $120,000 — or well over $1 million in the same 10-year period.