An energy efficiency upgrade at Moran State Park, located on Orcas Island in the San Juan Islands, helped the Washington State Parks program reduce energy use by investing in new and improved lighting at the historic park. Incentives provided through the local utility, Orcas Power & Light, covered nearly 30 percent of the project’s capital costs.
Moran State Park totals 5,000-plus acres with miles of hiking and biking trails, camping facilities and incredible views. The park is both a natural and historic treasure with more than 20 of the park’s structures built by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the 1930s. Originally the estate of Seattle mayor Robert Moran, many of the houses and buildings were constructed with wood and stone material found on the island. The energy efficiency upgrades had to be implemented with architectural and historic conservation in mind.
An energy audit was conducted to evaluate park facilities and identify deficiencies with a focus on window upgrades, lighting retrofits and other energy conservation actions to meet sustainability and energy goals. Outdated interior lighting lamps – incandescent and CFL – were replaced with LEDs, and fixtures and controls were updated to the latest technology. Lighting equipment installed park wide included 350 efficient LED lamps and fixtures, eight efficient exterior lights, and energy saving lighting controls in all park facilities. The park also made additional investments in energy-efficient appliances. A significant accomplishment of the energy retrofit was the replacement of a 35-year old dishwasher that used 80 percent of the parks total energy consumed during the peak months of July and August.
The park’s utility partners projected the lighting upgrades will save 36,447 kWh annually with a payback period of 3.8 years.
According to Billie-Gwen Russell, Sustainability & Energy Specialist, Washington State Parks, savings from the utility rebates helped to fund the system’s bicycles in parks program, which furthers sustainability goals.
“Many of our state parks have aging buildings in need of energy efficiency improvements,” observed Russell. “Our hope is to use the Moran State Park project as a showcase to inspire energy efficiency investments at other Washington state parks.
To read the full case study about the Moran State Park energy upgrade, click here.