City of Livermore, California
Livermore wanted to do more than just become a champion of environmental stewardship – City leaders knew that they could create a program that would wholly improve the lives of its residents by creating jobs, engaging students, bolstering local business, and reducing taxpayer burden. Livermore sought out a partnership with OpTerra to develop a holistic program focused on this big picture impact. Through a comprehensive set of energy and community engagement solutions, the Livermore-OpTerra Live More, Save More program reflected Livermore’s image as a pioneer of modern technology while providing a new source of funding through energy savings.
In 2013, OpTerra designed and delivered a comprehensive energy savings program to meet the City of Livermore’s needs. Solar facilities were built at the Municipal Airport, Civic Center, and Maintenance Service Center, offsetting almost 90 percent of energy costs at these facilities. Additionally, over 6,000 streetlights were retrofitted with LED lights to increase efficiency and improve street safety and visibility. The new lights were manufactured right in Livermore by a homegrown company, Bridgelux – not in a factory thousands of miles away – which directly benefited this growing local business.
Understanding that creating a sustainable community requires teamwork from both the City and its residents, Livermore and OpTerra created a paid internship program for local high school students to provide free energy consultations to local residents and small businesses. These popular education outreach events and engagement activities provided info to help the community at large reduce emissions and cut costs on energy bills.
After installing 1.44 MW of solar PV capacity across city sites, Livermore was able to cut utility costs by nearly 90 percent — saving taxpayers $10M and creating 188 new jobs tied to the energy program. The city was focused on extending these impacts beyond energy savings though and leveraged the partnership with OpTerra to maximize community engagement around the new initiative. From working with local LED lighting company Bridgelux to retrofit over 6,000 streetlights, to hiring 20 local student “Energy Ambassadors” to help homeowners benefit from residential energy efficiency opportunities, Livermore demonstrated their leadership as a city committed to strengthening long-term impacts for local businesses and residents. As a result of the adoption of energy efficiency measures championed by the Livermore Energy Ambassadors, the city projects a $25M increase in household incomes over the life of the program.