For more than a century, industry has employed various technologies to generate power more efficiently. These technologies, known as combined heat and power (CHP) (PDF), can use a variety of fuels to provide reliable electricity, mechanical power or thermal energy. Manufacturing generates large amounts of waste heat, typically vented into the air. By capturing and recycling this energy, businesses can reap the rewards of a low-cost, efficient way to generate clean electricity.
CHP technologies can maximize productivity, cut costs, create jobs, reduce emissions and enhance competitiveness. CHP applications exist in every state and together contribute 85 gigawatts of capacity annually, or almost 9 percent of the nation’s electricity.
Did You Know?
- CHP sites exist in all 50 states.
- CHP technologies produce 85 gigawatts of capacity annually.
- Doubling energy-efficient technology by 2020 could add 600,000 jobs.
Among the businesses benefiting from CHP is Caesars Entertainment, whose Harrah’s Rio All-Suites Hotel and Casino installed the first CHP system on the Las Vegas Strip. In 2004, as part of Caesars’ Code Green sustainability initiative, the complex installed a 4.9-megawatt system. Today, it generates 40 percent of the electricity, 60 percent of the hot water and 65 percent of the heat needed by the hotel-casino
“We have several combined heat and power applications across our enterprise and through our Code Green sustainability initiative are always looking for ways to improve energy efficiencies and promote a healthier environment for our guests, employees and communities in which we operate,” said Eric Dominguez, corporate director, energy and environmental services, Caesars Entertainment.
According to Oak Ridge National Laboratory, doubling the use of energy-efficient technologies by 2020 could increase industry investments by $140 billion and add an estimated 600,000 jobs. Among the many industrial efficiency pathways, CHP methods create heat as well as electricity, significantly improving a power plant’s efficiency. Pew’s state and city CHP capacity fact sheets provide examples of cost-effective, near-term solutions to reduce energy use around the country.