The Western Virginia Water Authority will get new residential, commercial water meter replacements to cut costs, water use
Honeywell announced a water metering and infrastructure renewal program with the Western Virginia Water Authority in Roanoke, Va. The plan will upgrade water meters across the Authority’s customer base and enhance energy efficiency at its facilities. Backed by a guaranteed system-wide water infrastructure improvement program with Honeywell, the $32-million project aims to increase meter accuracy, improve leak detection and reduce carbon dioxide emissions for the Authority—all without adverse impact to its operating budget.
The upgrades are expected to help the Authority save more than $1 million in annual electricity and operational costs, and addapproximately $1.5 million in revenue through increased water meter accuracy, which is guaranteed by Honeywell. As a result, the improvements are not expected to increase budgets or require additional taxpayer dollars to fund the capital outlay.
“Our previous water meter operation was essentially manual, leaving us with an unclear picture of how much water was lost due to leaks in customers’ homes and our system,” said Gary Robertson, eecutive director for water operations at the Western Virginia Water Authority. “The Honeywell upgrades are focused on helping us better manage our water supply and improve leak detection, which, in turn, will translate into better customer service.”
Under the Honeywell program, technicians will replace approximately 58,000 residential and commercial water meters with new electronic meters that wirelessly transmit real-time readings back to the Authority. The new electronic meters are expected to improve meter accuracy, help identify leaks and eliminate bi-monthly estimation of residential meter readings. Although meters will not need to be manually read with the new system, there will be no loss of Authority jobs as staff will work on other projects within the organization.
Honeywell will also install a data management system to provide the Authority with a single, centralized view of its water systems, as well as enhanced detail previously unavailable, including hourly customer consumption data. In addition, the new zone-metering capabilities will help the Authority more effectively identify potential leaks in its water system and reduce water loss.
Along with the metering system upgrades, the program will include energy retrofits and other conservation measures at Authority facilities, including its pump stations and four main water supply plants. Honeywell will perform the following upgrades:
· Thermostat replacements
· Temperature control retrofits
· Pump replacements
· Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) upgrades
· Lighting improvements
· Peak-shaving generator installations
The water meter and building improvements are expected to have a sizeable impact for the Authority from a sustainability standpoint. The upgrades will trim its electricity use by nearly 5 million kilowatt-hours annually and decrease carbon dioxide emissions by an estimated 8.8 million pounds per year. According to figures from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, this is equivalent to removing more than 780 cars from the road.
“For water providers, accurately monitoring and measuring water use is paramount to reducing waste and improving efficiency,” said Paul Orzeske, president of Honeywell Building Solutions. “By upgrading to newer, more advanced meters, the Western Virginia Water Authority is taking strides to account for a greater portion of its water supply, which should help to reduce both the strain on its own bottom line and overall costs for customers.”