Build San Antonio Green® (BSAG) is an official Partnership of:
How Our Partners Are Making A Difference
Since its inception in early 2004, the Bexar County Energy Management Program (EMP) is still going strong. The Infrastructure Services Department – Energy Management Division is responsible for tracking the amount of energy being used by County facilities and implementing energy-efficient projects. Our goals are to reduce and conserve energy and promote environmental responsibility throughout Bexar County. With initiatives such as employees riding VIA Metropolitan Transit for free using their IDs and developing the County’s carbon footprint with strategies to become carbon neutral, the County is well on its way in reaching these goals.
CITY OF SAN ANTONIO
The City of San Antonio has taken sustainability to an enhanced level by increasing the City’s initiatives in energy efficiency, green building and air quality. In 2006 the City adopted revisions to the Economic Development Incentive Scorecard. The purpose of the scorecard is to provide incentives to developers to build in accordance to USGBC LEED Standard or Build San Antonio Green. The City Council on April 19, 2007 passed and approved a green building resolution for all future City facilities. The resolution mandates that all future new city facilities be certified LEED Silver. On January 11, 2007, Council approved an ordinance to adopt amendments to the city’s energy conservation code. The amendments include energy controls for heated pools and outdoor lighting. The ordinance also mandated that all illuminated exit signs not exceed 5 watts per side. City Council also adopted a new chapter to the city code setting out procedures for the disposition of city property. These ordinance guidelines establish the procedures by which the City of San Antonio will dispose of surplus real property that is developable according to the provisions of the Unified Development Code (UDC) in an effort to increase the amount of single-family affordable home ownership available in the community. Affordable Housing Providers are to submit Assurance that the home(s) shall meet or exceed the current minimum Metropolitan Partnership for Energy’s Build San Antonio Green program guidelines.
On September 2007, City Council approved the creation of an Office of Environmental Policy (OEP). This division under the Office of the City Manager has been directed to reduce energy consumption and enhance municipal pollution prevention programs. The OEP will provide staff support to City departments, the business community and other public agencies to develop and implement sustainability initiatives.
CPS’ is showcasing its dedication to renewable energy and green building with several examples of sustainable construction. The Solar Power Station consists of 200 photovoltaic’s that acts as covered parking for the Institute of Texan Cultures. The Power Station is capable of producing 10 kilowatts electricity from the sunlight. The station also consists of an interactive exhibit that provides information on the benefits of solar power. The Northside facility includes 7,000 square feet of solar panels, 2K photovoltaic and 5K solar thermal; a 30,000-gallon rainwater reclamation system; energy efficient and green design; and a computer controlled energy management system.
CPS Energy of San Antonio is the nation’s largest municipally owned energy company providing both natural gas and electric service. In May 2007, CPS Energy added 240 megawatts (MW) of wind energy from the Cottonwood Creek Wind Farm southwest of Sweetwater, Texas. That boosted CPS Energy’s wind capacity to 501.8 MW, the equivalent of a large conventional electrical generating unit or, in other words, a “renewable-energy power plant.” The company’s goal is to achieve renewable-energy capacity equal to 15 percent of customers’ peak electrical demand by 2020. Now, with more wind energy on line along with other renewable sources (solar and landfill gas), CPS Energy is currently above 11 percent of peak demand, and it’s one of only a handful of utility systems nationwide that has surpassed the double-digit mark for renewable energy. The company makes wind-generated electricity available to customers through its Windtricity® program.
SAN ANTONIO WATER SYSTEM
SAWS has reduced its water consumption by 32% over the past 16 years through a combination of outreach and system maintenance. The agency subsidized the conversion of 24,000 high flow toilets to low flows in 2001, which is expected to save 250 million gallons per year. Its $7 million conservation budget and 16 person dedicated staff allows for implementation of outreach and rebate programs. The latest, “Welcome Home” program, subsidizes installation of xeriscaped landscapes.
VIA METROPOLITAN TRANSIT
VIA is a long-term steward of environmental and energy conversation. An aggressive fleet replacement program initiated in 1999 has to date yielded an average 65% reduction in oxides of nitrogen emissions and an 85% reduction in particulate matter emissions per transit vehicle. Reductions in emissions will continue to be achieved with an active engine retrofit program and as the replacement of aged fleet vehicles proceeds.
In addition to the fleet emissions reducing efforts, VIA has undertaken a number of energy conservation projects including efficiency upgrades of facility lighting, windows, and HVAC systems. VIA is also looking to renewable fuels as a means of conserving energy. Approximately 300 passenger waiting shelters using solar powered lighting have been placed throughout the VIA service area and a 10 kilowatt solar power supply will be used at the new South Central Transit Facility. Also, an E10 ethanol fuel blend was recently adopted for use in spark-ignited engines and the use of biodiesel is being considered for the near future. Planned installation of a microbe based water-recycling facility is expected to save more than 500,000-gal of water per month.
Aside from fleet and facility treatments and of greatest potential to improve the regional environment and reduce energy consumption, VIA is expanding transit services offering many more opportunities for individuals to leave their vehicles behind and ride the bus.
ALAMO AREA COUNCIL OF GOVERNMENTS
AACOG has taken a lead role in educating its constituency about the energy efficiency requirements of the Texas Emissions Reduction Act (Senate Bill 5). The agency is responsible for local planningto manage air quality in the San Antonio region, in coordination with the US Environmental Protection Agency and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. AACOG coordinates San Antonio Clean Cities, a program of the U.S. Department of Energy that helps local fleets transfer over to alternative, less polluting fuels, and manages the TxDOT Commute Solutions program to promote alternate transportation solutions for citizens. AACOG also operates a home weatherization program for low-income families.
GREATER SAN ANTONIO BUILDERS ASSOCIATION
The Greater San Antonio Builders Association is a not-for-profit trade association established to represent builders, developers, remodelors and affiliated industry members in cooperation to benefit and promote homeownership.GSABA is a trade association that offers the opportunity to its members to display products and services, and offers the community a showcase of member profiles and products. GSABA makes no representation, expressed, or implied, regarding the qualifications of its members or the quality of their products and services, but invites you to examine them for yourself.