Santa Fe Green Chamber of Commerce
See Bid/RFP documents for additional submission details.
The City of Santa Fe Water Division has had a long history of water conservation. A majority of the programs have been targeted at existing homes and homeowners. This program has saved millions of gallons since its inception. The commercial sector to date has not yet been broadly penetrated in these programs. In an effort to change this, the City conducted 30 restaurant audits in the fall of 2017 and the spring of 2018. Restaurants were recruited by the Green Chamber of Commerce and the audits were conducted by a contractor from Albuquerque.
According to a California Energy Commission study a restaurant will use approximately 5,800 gallons a day or over 2,000,000 gallons a year! With over 300 restaurants in the city, this equates to 635,000,000 million gallons of water! Even a small reduction of 10% represents a substantial potential water savings.
City personnel, members of the Water Conservation Committee, and the contractor worked jointly to develop a survey document for these audits. All the restaurants received free aerators as part of the audit as well as a report and a plaque.
The primary intent of the pilot was to assist in designing a water conservation program specifically tailored to the restaurant sector to maximize participation and water savings potential.
This pilot program resulted in the direct water savings of 450,000 gallons a year by replacing aerators at each restaurant with 0.5 aerators. It identified over 1.5 million gallons of water that could be saved if the recommended actions were taken.
Assuming this pilot covered 10% of the installed base a full blown Commercial Restaurant Audit program could be expected to immediately save over 4 million gallons and could identify savings of over 10 million gallons.
The current commercial rebate program meets some of the needs of the commercial sector (e.g. toilet rebates), but not all. The current commercial program sets the savings bar too high for this sector. The rebate program could be adjusted for this sector or more appliances added to the list.
It is recommended that the savings bar be lowered rather than adding and maintaining a list of more appliances. It is hypothesized that each commercial sector will add to this appliance list and a more general approach is recommended to reduce ongoing maintenance.
This program required the use of an Albuquerque-based consultant which added to the cost and time of this pilot program. It is recommended that the city partner with SFCC to create a training program to create certified Commercial Restaurant Auditors. As we currently do with the Irrigation Audits, a portion of the fee for the audit would be rebated to the restaurant.