Delaware’s Sustainable Energy Utility Partners with Delaware National Guard

*** This Press Release was Originally Issued by the Delaware Senate Majority Caucus ***

Friday, October 21, 2016 3:14 pm EDT


New Castle, Del.

The Delaware Sustainable Energy Utility (DESEU) and the Delaware Army National Guard (DEARNG) unveiled a state-of-the-art plan to reduce the National Guard’s energy consumption and energy costs.

The DEARNG’s Guaranteed Energy Savings Agreement, implemented by Siemens and funded through a loan from the Energize Delaware’s Revolving Loan Fund program, will reduce net energy requirements by integrating energy efficiency upgrades at 11 National Guard facilities throughout the state. These upgrades will reduce fossil fuel consumption by 38 percent and will save the Delaware National Guard $6 million in energy costs over the life of the 20-year agreement.

Guaranteed Energy Savings Agreements, also known as performance contracts, provide a means to help reduce energy consumption, implement a capital equipment upgrade, and improve the maintenance and operational cost of facilities and technical systems.  These projects are funded through the energy savings they create instead of passing the cost on to taxpayers.

Major General Frank Vavala, Adjutant General, Delaware National Guard, looks forward to the guard’s participation in this project – supporting the military’s initiative for energy resiliency by modernizing their energy consumption practices and significantly reducing DEARNG’s carbon footprint.

“This is a win-win for everyone. The Delaware National Guard is dedicated to caring for our environment and being good stewards of taxpayer dollars,” Vavala said. “These capital improvements will accomplish both goals.”

The joint effort between the National Guard and the DESEU will modernize infrastructure, reduce energy consumption, create operational efficiencies, utilize sources of renewable energy, create jobs in the local economy, and create new sources of revenue to fund program expenses, without impact to the taxpayer. 

Sen. Harris B. McDowell, III, Chair of the Senate Energy Committee and Board Chairman of the DESEU, said this project speaks volumes about the value of the DESEU.

“As the founder of the Sustainable Energy Utility and a veteran myself, I am thrilled to see this partnership between the National Guard and the DESEU,” McDowell said. “This is a testament both to DESEU’s positive impacts on the environment and on the budgets of the homeowners, schools, small businesses, farms, non-profits, and government agencies that it serves. It also speaks volumes of the National Guard’s commitment to fiscal and environmental responsibility. This kind of collaboration makes a real difference for taxpayers, for our military, and for the environment, and I’m proud to have played a part in it.”

Since the DESEU began its work in 2007, there has been a fivefold increase in accumulated photovoltaic generation. As a result, Delaware went from 37th in the nation in PV solar generation to among the top 10.

Tony DePrima, Executive Director of the DESEU, emphasized the impact that green energy investments have on Delaware as a whole. “Initiatives like the DEARNG’s Guaranteed Energy Savings Agreement will create jobs, drive economic development, and protect the environment for future generations in our state,” DePrima said.

The project is aimed at modernizing the DEARNG’s traditional energy sources, resulting in a significant reduction in energy costs and consumption.

Details of DEARNG’s Guaranteed Energy Savings Agreement include:

     * Modernization and retrofit of existing indoor lighting systems to use LED lighting technology.

     * Building weatherization and insulation.

     * Introduction of advanced energy management systems for the integration, control, and operation of the   

       Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning systems (HVAC) at 11 building sites.

     * Creation of a secure communications network offering DEARNG staff the ability to remotely access building 

       systems to monitor and control environmental conditions.

     * Installation of photovoltaic solar arrays for the production of electricity at two readiness centers.

Dr. John Byrne, DESEU’s co-founder and Director of the University of Delaware’s Center for Energy and Environmental Policy, has assisted with the research behind the DESEU’s projects.

“I think it’s important that our state has an organization like the DESEU, committed to providing individuals and businesses in Delaware with affordable clean energy and conservation, which will ultimately help them save money and better the environment,” Byrne said. “I look forward to seeing this project’s full impact on the DEARNG’s carbon footprint, and the state of Delaware as a whole.”

According to Siemens, which is contracted to lead the infrastructure improvement project, the Guaranteed Energy Savings Agreement is estimated to eliminate greenhouse gases equivalent to removing 320 standard size cars annually, from the roadways.  The project should annually reduce carbon dioxide emissions equivalent to burning 1.6 million pounds of coal – the total energy needs of 160 average U.S. homes.

“Performance contracts provide organizations with an avenue to pursue infrastructure improvements that also reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions,” said Dave Hopping, President of Siemens’ North American-based Building Technologies Division.  “This program will also create operational efficiencies and help develop jobs in the local economy without impact to the taxpayer.”



Delaware Senate Majority Caucus

Jesse Chadderdon, (302) 744-4282 or (302) 743-0945;

Caitlyn Gordon, (302) 577-8638 or (302) 744-4038;

Mat Marshall, (302) 577-8897 or (302) 744-4180


Amanda Naiman, (484)680-4427 or


Multimedia Files:

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Pictured, from left to right, are: Dr. Susan Lewis, State Energy Manager, DEARNG; Tony DePrima, Executive Director, DESEU; Sen. Harris B. McDowell III, DESEU co-founder; Major General Frank Vavala, Delaware National Guard; Richard Madeira, Siemens; Col. William Cost, Construction & Facilities Management Officer, DEARNG; Dr. John Byrne, DESEU co-founder and Director, University of Delaware’s Center for Energy and Environmental Policy.