The Lancaster Energy Commission is a five-member board, with a charter to advise and make recommendations on energy use, energy monitoring and energy efficiency measures in the Town-owned facilities.
In 2010, the Town received the Green Community designation by the MA Department of Energy Resources. This designation mandates that the Town’s municipal facilities and vehicles must reduce energy consumption by 20%. To achieve this goal, the Commission has undertaken the following actions:
- Energy audits - completed for the Town Hall, Police Station, Fire Station three DPW buildings, Library and Community Center. Building envelope improvements were recommended for all these facilities.
- Heating systems - replaced three heating systems at the Police Station, Central Fire Station, South Fire Station and Library. The system at the South Fire Station was switched from propane to natural gas in 2016.
- Lighting - installed lighting upgrades in most of the Town’s buildings, including LED lighting at the Library.
- Energy controller systems - installed two systems at the two DPW well pumps.
- Insulation and weatherization measures - installed at the Town Hall, two DPW facilities and South Fire Station.
- Electric vehicle and electric vehicle docking station to replace the Inspectional Services/Assessor’s vehicle.
- LED street lighting
- The Commission also spent a great deal of time on the analysis and selection of the HVAC system for the Prescott Building renovation project. The Commission worked with the architects, engineers, project manager and Town Administrator to plan an HVAC system that is cost-effective, energy-efficient and sustainable for a 30-40 year life span.
Other Green Initiatives
- Constructed a Town-owned Solar Array facility at the former landfill site on Lunenburg Road. See the Solectria web site for an up-to-the-hour accounting of our energy generation.
- The Town’s municipal buildings have received significant electricity credits due to the net metering of the solar array which are then applied to the building’s electric bills.
- Municipal Aggregation – the program was rolled out in 2012. The opt-in rate was 90% of the town’s residents that are now saving on their electricity rate compared with the rate from National Grid. The program continues to be extremely popular with an electric rate that is as much as a third lower than the rate charged by National Grid.
- Fuel Management System – the Town is monitoring gasoline and diesel fuel consumption with a fuel management system, called Fuel Master. This monitoring device has been installed in all of the Town’s vehicles and on the gas pumps and monitors the amount of fuel consumed by each vehicle.
It continues to be our goal to have measurable results in the reduction of electricity and fuels.2016 was an excellent year as we saw an 11.7% decrease in our overall consumption when compared with our baseline year of 2008.
The Commission will continue to monitor each facility and vehicle and maintain a reporting system that will show fiscal savings, as well as a reduction in our carbon footprint. This year we compiled an extensive list of improvements/upgrades for each of the Town’s municipal buildings. We will actively seek funds to make these improvements over the next two years.