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2007 ICELI GHG report

According to the Durham GHG Inventory and Local Action Plan (ICLEI, 2007b), the greenhouse gas (GHG) emission sources of the City of Durham and Durham Country are categorized into six sections: buildings, vehicle fleets, streetlights & traffic signals, water & wastewater treatment facilities, waste produced through municipal operations, and public schools. Table 1 summarizes the energy cost, Criteria Air Pollutants (CAP) emissions, and GHG generated from the Durham city and county governments.

Table 1. Local Government Operations Emissions in Fiscal Year 2005 (ICLEI, 2007b)

Operations Total Energy

(MMBtu)

Cost ($)

Emissions (tons)

NOx SOx CO VOC PM10 GHGs
Buildings 305,450 3,421,420 71 186 8 1 4 42,740
Vehicle Fleet 178,920 2,055,100 60 3 316 33 2 15,310
Streetlights 49,240 1,778,130 18 59 1 0 1 10,610
Water/

Sewage

163,670 2,381,080 58 182 4 1 4 33,560
Waste 0 3,310 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A -5
Schools

Total

395,460

1,092,740

6,607,480

$16,246,510

132

339

244

673

76

405

8

43

7

18

56,510

158,710

 

  • Buildings

The emissions of local government building sector (not including school buildings) was approximately 42,740 tons in 2005, which is 27% of the total emissions. Actions conducted to reduce energy consumption before 2005 led to savings of approximately 3,000 tons of GHG through efforts such as retrofitting county owned HVAC system and lighting (ICLEI, 2007b). Based on the related data, ICLEI suggested that the government should prioritize energy efficiency in the early stages of the building design process, such as purchasing renewable energy tags to offset emissions, using solar thermal technology for hot water heating in their facilities, and developing more water and energy conservation programs. In addition, ICLEI also identified the top five most energy intensive (energy use/square foot) buildings for both Durham County and the City of Durham. However, less than 25% of the City owned and operated facilities’ data were available to ICLEI at that time, so the energy efficiency of more than 75% of the City’s buildings was not calculated (ICLEI, 2007c). Therefore, ICLEI also recommended the City of Durham to access the square footage of all its facilities.

 

  • Vehicles

Vehicle fleets operated by the County and City include public works, fire department, police department, solid waste transportation, and public health department. The Durham GHG Inventory and Local Action Plan does not contain off-road engines such as lawnmowers and golf carts due to the difficulties in tracking their fuel consumptions and emissions. In 2005, there were approximately 1,195 fleet vehicles – consuming about 771,210 gallons of gasoline and 407,230 gallons of diesel fuel – operated by City and 360 vehicles – consuming about 235,240 gallons of gasoline and 23,140 gallons of diesel – operated by County (ICLEI, 2007b). Table 2 shows the detailed CAP and GHG emissions which accounted for 10% of the total local government GHG emissions.

Table 2. Local Government Vehicle Fleets: 2005 Energy Consumption, Costs and Emissions (ICLEI, 2007b)

Jurisdiction Energy

(MMBtu)

Cost

($)

Emissions (tons)

NOx SOx CO VOC PM10 GHGs
City of Durham 146,560 1,687,880 52 2 242 25 2 12,540
Durham County

Total

32,370

178,930

367,220

2,055,100

8

60

0

2

74

316

8

33

0

2

2,770

15,310

 

The fuel-saving measures implemented before 2005 saved around 243 tons of GHG and have ample room for improvement. Moreover, the City of Durham was conducting an ongoing under-utilized vehicle study at that time. In order to further reduce emissions, ICLEI recommended the governments to adopt a tangible fuel reduction target (learning from Raleigh and the State of NC) by developing driver training programs and employing high energy efficient fuels and vehicles like biodiesels (ICLEI, 2007c).

 

  • Streetlights, Traffic Signals & Other Outdoor Lights

The lighting sector includes road lighting, park lighting, accent lighting, traffic signals, and other lights operated by the City and County governments. These lights account for 10,610 tons of GHG emissions, equivalent to 7% of total local government emissions (ICLEI, 2007d). The City of Durham operates all of the traffic signals located within Durham County, and leases streetlights from Duke Energy and Piedmont EMC. In the fiscal year of 2005, 350 intersections with traffic signals were operated by the City. It was estimated that the city’s traffic signals consumed 3,493,370 kWh of electricity in 2005 (ICLEI, 2007b). Some parking lot lights in the County were not captured in the light section and lights connected to County buildings were included in the building section. The recommendations for lightings by ICLEI include replacing incandescent traffic signals with LED traffic signals and mercury vapor street lighting with HPS street lighting. In addition, a remote streetlight control program is suggested to increase energy efficiency. Table 3 shows the detailed CAP emissions, energy use, and cost for lighting operations.

Table 3. Streetlights, Traffic Signals & Other Outdoor Lights: 2005 Energy Use, Cost, and Emissions (ICLEI, 2007b)

 

Lighting Type

Energy

(MMBtu)

Cost

($)

Emissions (tons)

NOx

SOx

CO

VOC

PM10

GHGs

Traffic Signals

11,920

267,140

4

14

0

0

0

2,570

Streetlights & other Outdoor lights

37,320

1,510,980

14

44

1

0

1

8,040

Total

49,240

1,778,120

18

59

1

0

1

10,610

 

  • Water and Wastewater Treatment

Two water treatment facilities and two water reclamation facilities are operated by the City of Durham. The treatment facilities have a combined capacity of 52 million gallons per day (MGD) and the reclamation facilities have a combined 40 MGD. The County operates a single wastewater treatment facility with a capacity of 12 MGD. In the fiscal year of 2005, the average treatment output at the City’s water treatment facilities was 26.44 MGD and 19.8 MGD at the wastewater reclamation facilities. The greenhouse gas emissions were 1.2 tons per MGD water treated and 2.4 tons per MGD of wastewater treated. Table 4 summarizes the total energy use, energy costs and GHG emissions (ICLEI, 2007b).

Table 4. Water and wastewater treatment facilities energy use (ICLEI, 2007b)

Jurisdiction Area of Operations Energy

(MMBtu)

Energy Costs ($)

Emissions (tons)

NOx SOx CO VOC PM10 GHGs
City Water & Wastewater 1,41,870 19,92,510 50 156 3 1 3 28,860
County Wastewater 21,800 3,88,560 8 26 1 0 1 4,700
Total   1,63,670 23,81,080 58 182 4 1 4 33,560

 

  • Solid Waste Produced by Local Government Operations

The emissions from solid waste generated by operations of local governments are included in the Local Government Waste Sector. It includes all employee generated waste and waste from municipal government facilities. Since emissions from city government operations are usually less than 3%, the common practice is for the City of Durham to not track its solid waste. The County’s solid waste production for the fiscal year 2005 was 120 tons and 54 tons of GHGs were produced from decomposition in the landfill. Because methane was flared off, this reduced GHG emissions by 4 tons (ICLEI, 2007b).

 

  • Public Schools

At the request of Durham Advisory Committee, public school emissions were included in the local government sector of the 2007 report since the City and County of Durham have a significant degree of influence over the Durham Public Schools (DPS). DPS operate 51 buildings, including 46 schools and other operations and administrative facilities. DPS operations emitted 56,510 tons of GHG, accounting to 35% of all local government emissions. Based on the 2005 data, these DPS facilities consumed 312,850 MMBtu of energy (ICLEI, 2007e). The DPS vehicle fleet includes 332 school buses, 37 large trucks, 176 vans, and other small trucks and cars. The fleet used 125,000 gallons of unleaded gasoline and 552,830 gallons of biodiesel in the 2005 school year. ICLEI recommended building efficiency, fleet efficiency, and water and energy conservation education programs as future improvements (ICLEI, 2007f).