Obscuring the Obscured: How to Make Trash Less of a Nuisance


In 2009, the City of Seattle partnered with local waste collection companies to reduce the amount of waste containers present in the public right of way. Using Pioneer Square as the primary recipient of the new program’s initiatives, the Seattle Clear Alleys Program restricted the times that businesses could place dumpsters on the street or in the alley. Additionally, it required businesses to replace their dumpsters with 33 gallon municipal solid waste bags. Having restricted the means in which garbage can be placed outside for disposal, the local hauling companies increased pick up frequency to accommodate. While the overall efficacy of the Pioneer Square program is still debated by business owners and street walkers alike, the end result of said initiatives is fairly clear: there...

Utility Industry Challenges Part 2: Customer Satisfaction and Engagement Is More Important Than Ever

In the first blog post of this series we discussed five trends that are driving complexity for utilities and their customers: New enabling technologies Mounting pressure Energy management Clean energy Customer choice In part two of this series, we’ll address the importance of customer satisfaction and engagement for utilities to achieve their energy savings goals while meeting customer demand. The relationship between customers and utilities has historically not been the strongest. According to Accenture’s 2014 study on energy consumers, only 37 percent of consumers trust their utilities to provide sound energy advice and 71 percent expect their energy providers to do more to help reduce their energy bills. As renewables, distributed generation and other forms of clean power...

Our Take on PRSM Show: Retail Has Come a Long Way, Baby!


As we’ve shared in previous Insider posts, retailers are leading the way in energy and sustainability management! And, we are excited to share Ecova’s newly released 2015 Energy and Sustainability Predictions - Findings from Retail Professionals report. Over the past five to seven years, this industry has emerged as a leader in energy efficiency investments to reduce costs. Low-cost initiatives have been the key to this success. For example, 44 percent of retailers invested in energy-efficient lighting upgrades in 2014, compared to only 28 percent across the remaining commercial and industrial industry.  Now, retailers have caught the “energy efficiency bug” and are showing the desire to go beyond their early ad-hoc projects and focus on long-term energy and sustainability strategies...

Ecova’s Utility Division Milestone: 108 TWh of Energy Savings

Last month, Ecova announced that we had saved our Facility clients $800 million in resource expenses in 2014. Our clients didn’t necessarily change the way they do business… they enlisted Ecova as a partner to help identify where waste was occurring, and then worked with Ecova’s experts to fix it. Now I’m thrilled that we can finally announce more great news: our Utility division has delivered 108 terawatt hours (TWh) of energy savings to our utility clients over the last eleven years, including nearly 19 TWh of savings in 2014. And like with the Facility savings, the great thing is that utility customers are saving almost $13 billion by simply working with utilities to change the way they use energy. They are installing LEDs and CFLs, getting energy audits, adding insulation and sealing...

Learn from Ecova’s Utility Program Experts at AESP in Portland

We’re counting the days until AESP’s Spring Conference, which is right here in Ecova’s backyard in Portland, Ore. from May 19-21. Will Walker, Utility Solutions senior manager, will be presenting “Why it Works—Best Practices in Midstream Lighting” on Wednesday, May 20 as part of Session 3A from 3:15-4:30 p.m. We encourage you to attend and learn how the adoption of the midstream program model is changing how utilities influence their markets. Attendees will hear about the results and best practices from utilities across the country that are leaning on the distributor network to claim savings and drive results. Many of our utility experts will be at the conference to talk about the tools we use to build successful, customized programs for clients to meet their energy reduction goals....