Ameresco Builds Solar Energy System for DEA: Efficient Energy for Government Agencies Moving Forward 

On top of the millions in cost savings from solar energy that will come over the coming years, this one facility will be able to provide much in emissions reduction for the planet.


Ameresco, Inc., open since 2000, is a worldwide leader of   efficiency, including solar infrastructure creation, upgrades, solar energy assets and comprehensive services. A worldwide leader in renewable energy, they have the ability to work with any corporation in the creation of solar power systems or other renewable energy sources in their construction or upgrades for the value of overall cost saving and efficiency needs. They are also able to work in the construction of renewable and solar energy plants, assisting in Federal, state and local government projects that can provide institutional cost reduction for all renewable energy sources. Working in the U.S., Canada and Europe, much advancement has been provided both in governments as well as healthcare and educational institutions, housing authorities, and commercial and industrial customers with solar energy systems. Based in Framingham, MA, Ameresco has 1,000+ employees with local energy expertise for all worldwide solar energy projects.  

The original Energy Savings Performance Contract (EPSC), agreeing on installation of solar energy between DEA and Ameresco, began last September through the U.S. Department of Energy’s ESPC ENABLE program. The intention of the contract was to gain all of the financial benefits of the solar investment tax credit that were available at the time.  A solar energy sales agreement was placed with that traditional contract as well. 

With the opening of this completed ground-mount solar facility at the DEA’s El Paso location, much is yet to be seen for what will come of their cost savings in relation to the office energy sources in the future. The complete ESPC is expected to provide over $9.2m in savings in the DEA’s energy costs over approximately the next 20 years in the switch to solar power at their El Paso Intelligence Center.  

On top of the millions in cost savings from solar energy that will come over the coming years, this one facility will be able to provide much in emissions reduction for the planet.  This solar facility alone will cut carbon emissions by over an estimated 3400 metric tons each year.  Ameresco’s operation of this new solar power facility for the next 20 years is an incredible step for this facility, our nation and the earth as a whole. It’s incredible to imagine what steps could be taken if more large facilities like this would be able to advance in the direction of solar power or other renewable energy for their offices. 

With well over 7,000 solar panels installed during project construction this incredible savings will occur immediately near the Mexican border. Additionally, there will be almost 1500 high-efficiency LEDs working both the interior and exterior solar lighting functions for the location, saving on lighting products as well as energy. With long-life LEDs, maintenance and replacement costs will be greatly reduced along with the improved quality of illumination and dimming control. 

This solar ground-mount system is the first renewable energy source installation for a government facility here in the U.S. The U.S. Department of Energy’s Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) supported the development of the project financially and technically, with grants coming from the Assisting Federal Facilities with Energy Conservation Technologies (AFFECT) program.  Much more will be gained nationally with the further development of this program, and addition of solar energy and other renewable energy systems in our large government office locations. 


Much will be gained with the U.S. DEA and Ameresco working together for the inclusion of solar energy, such as daily cost savings and overall reduction in general.  A 2.5-megawatt solar facility for the DEA location at Fort Bliss in El Paso, TX, is now complete. It is great to know that one of the most powerful government enforcement agencies in our nation is moving to the inclusion of solar energy into their daily processes and procedures.  




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