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University Cuts Utility Costs by 15% After Implementing an Energy Management System

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CLIENT: Cecil Sheppard, Supervisor of High Voltage and Utilities

GEOGRAPHY: Columbia, South Carolina

VITALS: 212 buildings, 30,721 students 

CHALLENGES: Needed a better way to track utility costs and consumption

RESULTS: Reduced utility bills by analyzing and adjusting consumption

ADDITIONAL BENEFITS: Documented billing errors in the system

By analyzing consumption, Dude Solutions Energy Management helps the University of South Carolina reduce its utility bills

When Cecil Sheppard, Supervisor of High Voltage and Utilities for the University of South Carolina (USC), arrived on campus, tracking utility costs and consumption was completed by hand. As the campus grew, Cecil and his team struggled to track consumption across the 10.9 million sq. ft. they were responsible for maintaining. He turned to Dude Solutions for help upgrading his outdated utility tracking system.

Utilizing Dude Solutions Energy Management, Cecil has turned the Department of Energy Services into a model for other colleges and universities across the country, effectively and efficiently maintaining USC’s utility budget. Cecil’s daily use of the software allows him to track costs and consumption, identify and evaluate poor performing buildings, replace inefficient machinery, and charge utility costs back to the departments that are consuming energy. “One of our residence halls has a restaurant and a telecommunications hub in the building. With Dude Solutions Energy Management, we can place a sub-meter on both the restaurant and the telecommunications hub, allowing us to charge food services and the IT department their fair share of the energy costs,” Cecil said.

Reports from within the system provide documentation for billing errors revealed through analyzing USC’s bills and accounts. Cecil found fire suppression lines charged for consumption, duplicate sewer charges, and 32 accounts with zero consumption that were charged service fees. As a result, he received $82,979 in reimbursement for these errors

USC also utilizes the reporting function within our Energy Management solution to educate state legislators on rising utility costs and to justify requests for additional funding. The system enables Cecil’s team to quickly and easily create graphs illustrating yearly costs and savings. Within one year of implementing the software, USC had a partial realized savings of $887,979.68, a 15% decrease in the average annual utility bill.

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