Alternative Energy As a Service

Dec. 11, 2008
Switching to alternative energy sources doesnt have to be a do-it-yourself project. For example, service providers such as Intrinergy can simplify the process by designing, implementing and operating the alternative energy source.

Need thermal as well as electrical energy as a service? That's the focus of Intrinergy, a specialist in using biomass and otherwise unused hydrocarbons (such as wood residue, industrial scrap, fiber residues and alternative feedstock). In addition, the company helps its clients reduce greenhouse gas emissions, landfill contributions and their need for non-renewable fossil fuels.

John Keppler, the Intrinergy CEO, says an industrial company, by using the service, can save 15% to 20% of its annual energy costs. "Ultimately, what we're able to do is not just help customers save cost, but to add cost certainty to their operations. In addition, because we use renewable sources, we're able to reduce that company's environmental footprint and greenhouse gas emissions to almost zeros on-site."

For example, in late 2007, Intrinergy began supplying renewable energy at a Wiggins, Mississippi paper mill. Today, Intrinergy's on-site energy unit supplies up to 50,000 pounds per hour of process steam to fuel the mill's operations, saving the company an estimated 30% of what it formerly spent for fossil fuels, says Keppler. He says the Intrinergy service facility will also reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 20,000 tons per year. Keppler says Intrinergy assumes responsibility for everything from engineering to plant ownership operations. "That includes raw material aggregation, maintenance, facility design, engineering finance, operations and do so in a way that guarantees delivery and environmental benefits. The service business of Intrinergy is designed to allows manufacturers access to sustainable energy while simultaneously freeing their capital and human resources to focus on the core manufacturing businesses."

Keppler says Intrinergy, as a service provider, manages all facets of the biomass energy operation. "For example, Intrinergy is now implementing a service at a Connecticut paper mill where were converting its sludge by-product for on-site energy production. For customers without a biomass by-product, Intrinergy arranges an outside supply."

Keppler says the ideal customer would be any facility consuming a minimum of 20,000 pounds of steam per hour. Industry sectors served include pulp and paper, chemicals, pharma, beverage and automotive supplies.

Visit for more stories about how the renewables energy industry is reshaping manufacturing.

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