Earlier this month, Rep. Derek Kilmer and officials from Tacoma Power and Bonneville Power visited Tacoma’s NewCold automated storage facility, which was named among the top two most efficient cold storage warehouses in the nation by more than 50 percent.
The Tacoma warehouse efficiency is, in part, because of its partnership with Tacoma Power and BPA’s Energy Smart Industrial program — a factor in NewCold selecting Tacoma as its first U.S. location.
The majority of the savings come from NewCold’s building design and automated model. Frozen goods are trucked into the facility and transferred onto cranes that move the pallets throughout the warehouse for future distribution, all without disrupting the temperature requirement. For further energy savings, Tacoma Power and BPA consulted on the project, and NewCold earned a $1.5 million conservation incentive that went toward its 2015 construction.
The energy savings will result in $6 million in savings over a 10-year period by reducing their energy use by 8 million kilowatt hours per year, which translates into enough clean and renewable energy to power more than 600 Tacoma Power homes.
“Tacoma Power is proud to celebrate this unprecedented partnership. Our engineers worked with BPA and their consultants to help NewCold design their latest, most energy-efficient cold storage facility in the country, right here in Tacoma,” said Chris Robinson, superintendent of Tacoma Power, in a statement. “The energy savings from NewCold’s innovative building design represent the largest conservation project in Tacoma Power’s history. It would cost us more than twice as much to supply NewCold with the same amount of power we were able to save through this project.”
NewCold has facilities around the globe, including countries like Europe and Australia. The Tacoma warehouse created 75 family-wage jobs, which is expected to double within the first five years of operation.