California wineries can take advantage of substantial rebates from
Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) when they install or
upgrade to energy-efficient operating equipment and facilities.
Working to meet energy-efficiency goals set by the California Public
Utilities Commission (CPUC), PG&E is offering three rebate programs
that are currently authorized and funded through the end of 2005.
Two of the programs PG&Es Standard Performance
Contract (SPC) program and Express Efficiency, the small-customer
equipment retrofit program offer rebates for upgrading existing
winery facilities and equipment to achieve improved energy efficiency.
The third, Savings By Design, is a new construction design assistance
and incentive program.
Potential rebate amount
Under the SPC and Express Efficiency programs, wineries receive
incentives to upgrade tank and building insulation, lighting systems,
refrigeration systems, and HVAC systems.
One-time rebates are calculated on the estimated number of kilowatt
hours (kWh) of energy a winery will save in the first year of use
of the new insulation or equipment retrofit. The winery can recoup
up to 50% of the installation cost. The cash limit of rebates is
$300,000 per PG&E electric meter (if a winery has more than
one PG&E electric meter, it can take advantage of more than
one rebate cap).
Savings By Design offers customized pre-construction design assistance
and rebates for installation of new or expanding facilities and
equipment meeting energy-efficiency guidelines. Rebates in this
program can be for tank insulation, naturally cooled caves, daylighting,
efficient lighting, HVAC, refrigeration, and process equipment.
New construction rebates are limited to $75,000 per meter. Tank
insulation rebates are limited to tanks smaller than 50,000 gallons.
A recent study of energy use in California wineries found that larger
wineries typically already insulate tanks, and as a result, PG&E
is targeting small wineries with its rebate appeals (see Survey
sidebar). PG&E is trying to encourage small wineries to
take advantage of this program, since they are less likely to insulate
without incentives, says Chip Kime of ConeTech (Santa Rosa,
CA), which offers PolarClad tank insulation from Australia.
Wineries are encouraged to contact their local PG&E representatives
early in the new construction process to help them determine which
installations, equipment design changes, and upgrades might be eligible.
A program of solar energy installation rebates, formerly offered
by the California Energy Commission, has run out of funds and is
currently being reviewed for renewed funding in the next state budget.
PG&E stresses that solar energy is not part of the rebate programs
in this report, but customers should check
for rebates through the PG&E Self Generation Incentive Program
(SGIP). SGIP is slated to continue through 2007, with additional
funding expected annually beginning January 2005. See PWV, January/February
2004 for more information on solar energy installations.
Jim Salomone, account manager in Sonoma County, reports several
wineries are already taking advantage of the PG&E rebates. Korbel
Champagne Cellars (Guerneville, CA) and Robert Mondavi Winery (Oakville,
CA) installed PolarClad tank insulation; Rodney Strong and Chalk
Hill wineries (Healdsburg, CA) upgraded to more efficient lighting;
Clos du Bois (Geyserville, CA) is working on a compressed-air project
with its presses, which will earn a rebate; and Sterling Vineyards
(Calistoga, CA) underwent a cool-roof upgrade.
Tank insulation for energy efficiency
Cuvaison Winery installed new tanks with PolarClad tank insulation
at their new Carneros facility (constructed for harvest 2004) which
received a rebate of $19,000 through the SPC program. The winery
also installed PolarClad on tanks at the Calistoga, CA winery (built
in 1979), and were rebated through the SPC program.
Tory Britton Sims, Cuvaison CFO, worked with Robert Davis of PG&E
to get rebates on several energy-efficient aspects of the winerys
new facility through Savings By Design. Electrical engineers installed
self-extinguishing lighting systems, lighting controls, and daylighting,
which earned rebate dollars. The winerys new wastewater treatment
system and compressed air system were inspected for potential efficiency
improvements and rebates.
Rebate programs in the past have meant a lot of paperwork
for the winery for a small amount of rebate money, but these new
rebates are substantial, and PG&E helped us earn the maximum,
Canandaigua insulated many of its tanks in the Central Valley
at a cost of around $255,000, reports Kime. PG&E
paid $125,000 of those costs.
Lighting upgrade serves dual purpose
Chalk Hill Winery started work on a lighting upgrade in late 2003
and was able to obtain a 2004 rebate. Estate Manager Ron Jaramillo
reports the winery replaced all ballasts in order to use more efficient
bulbs and installed motion sensors to turn lights on and off according
to whether a room is occupied. Jaramillo estimates Chalk Hill received
up to 65% of its capital cost back in rebates and incentives.
One of my favorite things about the new lighting, Jaramillo
says, is that the new green-tip bulbs have less mercury and
are a lot less taxing to the environment. On top of the energy savings,
were saving several dollars per bulb by not having to send
them to hazardous waste disposal.
Compressed-air energy savings plan
Process Engineer Andy Woehl is working to improve the compressed-air
supply to four tank presses at Clos du Bois Winery. According to
PG&E, new compressed-air systems meeting efficiency guidelines
are eligible for incentives.
Compressed air is a critical operational component in many types
of winery equipment (including high-speed bottling lines), and it
plays a crucial role during harvest for operation of bladder presses.
If compressed-air systems are not designed properly or functioning
at maximum potential, bladder presses will not yield all of the
potential juice from a load of grapes. Time is lost if press cycles
have to be re-run for complete juice extraction. Additionally, pomace
that is too wet when discharged from a press may overload pomace-removal
Compressed air is the third largest consumer of industrial electrical
power in California. When it came time to change our compressed-air
system at Clos du Bois, explains Woehl, we looked for
an effective solution both to increase crush efficiency and to reduce
electrical energy use for harvest operations.
To achieve this, we are making three major system changes
for the 2004 harvest. First, we are increasing the diameter of the
main compressed-air pipeline. The system was sized properly for
year-round applications, but is too small for harvest loads. A system
that is too small results in pressure losses or lost work from the
Second, we have installed additional air-receiver capacity.
Since the bladder presses require large volumes of air in short-time
spurts, we can slowly make the volume we need to refill the receivers,
and this reduced the size of the compressors we were operating.
Third, we are purchasing a new variable-frequency drive air
compressor and dryer. Using variable frequency technology will enable
us to have a smart compressor that will increase or decrease the
compressed air production (and energy required) to match the amount
of compressed air we are actually using.
Clos du Bois expects to see a 16% decrease in energy use for its
compressed-air systems based on a test run with the bottling line
before the system was upgraded, and Woehl believes, with the addition
of a few more air receivers, the winery will see further energy
Cool roof upgrade
Sterling Winery upgraded to cooler roofing during earthquake retrofitting
in 2003, reports Ed Wheeler, the winerys Director of Environmental
Engineering and Safety.
Foam roofing went on the roofs of Cellars 14 and the fermentation
room of Sterlings hilltop winery. Roofing layers included
plywood just above the ceiling, then a fire-barrier material layer,
then the foam, and a hard acrylic coat to seal against weather damage.
The spray-on foam has an estimated R19 insulation factor, depending
on depth. Depths of foam ranged from two inches to four inches to
allow for roof slope and water drainage.
PG&E calculated our rebate at $0.15 per square foot, and
the roofing covered about 30,000 square feet, Wheeler reports.
The hardest part was getting through the paperwork, but we
have a great PG&E representative, Jim Salomone, who was really
helpful with that.
Getting the word out
We want to get the word out to wineries that these rebates
are available, Salomone stresses. Were working
hard with the CPUC to solve the energy crisis without building more
has information about the energy efficiency rebates.