This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on September 7, 2010 5:47 PM. The previous post in this blog was "This hearing is a big bore". The next post in this blog is The O's latest civic contribution. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Tuesday, September 7, 2010

At Portland City Hall, mission creep never ends

The bureaucrats' latest foray into something that's best left alone: Now the city is going to get into the business of selling heat, air conditioning, and hot water in the Pearl District. Today they put out for a $50,000 contract for a consultant (no doubt already hand-picked) to keep things rolling:

The City of Portland’s 2009 Climate Action Plan (http://www.portlandonline.com/bps/index.cfm?c=49989&) established the goal of producing 10 percent of the total energy used within Multnomah County from on-site renewable sources and clean district energy systems by 2030. To support this goal, the City hired a consultant to perform a feasibility study of a neighborhood district energy system to supply space heating, space cooling and domestic hot water to existing and new buildings in the North Pearl District. This study documented the potential business case for a district energy system in the North Pearl District....

For the past year, the City has been working with partners to analyze and gauge the feasibility of a range of neighborhood-scale utility investments. The City finds that District Energy (DE) investments are likely to be among the most economically viable and environmentally beneficial strategies to reduce energy use and carbon emissions....

The City of Portland, Bureau of Bureau of Planning and Sustainability is seeking proposals from individuals, firms, teams or consultants, hereafter called “Proposer(s),” with demonstrated experience in district energy development, financing and ownership, and proposes to engage the successful Proposer for the following services:

a. Convening stakeholders, investors and suppliers with the intent to support installation of at least one DE system.
b. Performing research and reporting on district energy (DE) ownership, financing and development strategies, including an analysis of opportunities and barriers.
c. Developing an outreach plan and providing education to the community about the benefits of DE systems.

How to pay for this grand experiment? Why, we'll simply borrow the money from Bank of America. It will be like getting the whole system for free.

Comments (13)

Beaverton beat them to it.

Forced to buy the system now they run it and are hyping the potential.


Its all part of the Grand Plan. Why don't you ask a Westie for a copy?

I would imagine Shields-Obletz would be in the running for this.

More likely to be funded by the next several rounds of water bill hikes...

When is Sam going to hire a staff person for the "Boring Stuff that People want to be reasonably priced and maintained"?

Sam and his little tropp of rah-rah staffers have no clue (I enter Amy Ruiz into evidence) at all what they are doing, yet they get to piss away all kinds of tax dollars.

...which would be almost admirable.


Of course, it is right next to the site of the former Lincoln Steam Plant which DID supply district steam (and electricity.) until a coupla' decades or so ago.

Of course, it was torn down and the electrical infrastructure moved at public expense by the PDC as a gift for real estate developers.

The irony was that it's announcement of destruction was made public the same day that Burlington, Vermont, commemorated its brand new civic co-generation plant.

holy Hestia, goddess of the hearth... save us from more mischief from kiddie hall

Only $50,000 for the study? That's barely enough to turn on the computers. Oh, I see. Be nice and you get the big contract too. City Council wants you to put some skin in the game.

I propose "solar ivy" for all the city buildings. Not quite a living plant wall...but almost, and very expensive.
Sam will love it.

Mission Creepy.

=District Entropy=

A chief financing method for these boondoggles is cap and tax or some variant. One of the very active consultancies pushing schemes and peddling their wares to municipalities is a firm called Garforth International LLC who will be more than happy to work for small $$'s up front and a percentage of the downstream "revenue" or "savings." Their lead on financing methods is a fellow who was one of Ken Lay's lieutenants at Enron. May your blogging be blessed with their participation or an enterprise of similar ilk.

"Only $50,000 for the study?"

The first taste is always free (well, relatively speaking), 'cause you'll be back.

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