Partners: Greenprint Partners, MIST Environment
This research project identified municipalities in the ComEd service territory with the greatest potential for adopting green stormwater infrastructure in order to create new energy savings opportunities in the wastewater treatment sector. The potential energy savings and non-energy impacts of adoption were then quantified.
To assess the market potential for a green stormwater infrastructure (GSI) incentive program, the research team:
- Created a scoring tool to assess which municipalities could most benefit from GSI
- Conducted interviews with leadership at the top nine municipalities
- Quantified the energy-saving potential of GSI for each municipality
- Identified and assessed the non-energy impacts most attractive to each municipality
- Recommended next steps to build a GSI-based energy efficiency offering
- Localized flooding was the most frequently cited pain point when municipal leaders were asked why they are interested in GSI.
- Municipal leaders are familiar with GSI terminology and technology at a foundational level, but most cited the need for expert support and/or added capacity at key points throughout the planning and implementation process.
- Up-front and long-term maintenance costs were the most frequently cited challenges when municipal leaders were asked about barriers that prevent them from scaling GSI.
- The energy-saving potential of GSI installation within the nine communities is estimated at 1.4 to 8.3 GWh per year.
- Non-energy impacts of GSI implementation across the nine municipalities could:
- Create $30 million in economic development value over 40 years if robustly deployed.
- Achieve an average crime reduction of 2 percent.
- Add an average of 150 acres of natural and green spaces per municipality.