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Construction company hires energy expert

BY Ken Clark

Gilbane Building Co. has hired Robert Preiss, a 33-year industry veteran, to lead the company’s energy modeling and High Performance Building efforts.  Preiss’ experience covers a wide range of client types, including commercial, industrial, high-tech, and utility products and services. His expertise includes efficient lighting, HVAC, retrocommissioning, cogeneration, microturbines, wind turbines, deregulation, management and engineering.

Gilbane will oversee the integration of High Performance Building and Energy Modeling practices across all markets within Gilbane. Preiss brings extensive engineering and project management experience encompassing a diverse range of projects, including lighting system design, energy screenings for utility companies, feasibility studies, energy savings projections, and equipment testing and evaluation. In addition, he has played an instrumental role in research, evaluation, design, and procurement for suppliers and utility companies resulting in energy and cost efficiencies for clients and users.

"We are thrilled to have Robert join us to lead this important service area for Gilbane," said Tom Goderre, Gilbane VP and Arizona district manager. "Robert has a distinctive background, having served clients in the private, public and energy sectors. He brings a solid combination of technical expertise with a passion for the work he does."

Previously,  Preiss provided energy consulting, project management and engineering services to firms such as Nexant, Salt River Project, Montana-Dakota Utilities Co., Holophane Corporation, Duro-Test Lighting and Colorado Springs Utilities.

 

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Moen promotes building efficiency video

BY Ken Clark

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Faucet, sink and showerhead manufacturer Moen released a video showing “five steps to building profitable green homes.”

One of the suggestions: Buy American

In the video Steve Easley, described as a building science consultant, explains five general categories to building more profitable green homes: design, resource efficiency, durability, energy efficiency and water efficiency.

In terms of resource efficiency, here’s one idea: Buy American. He pointed to the example of bamboo flooring. “Bamboo is certainly a sustainable material,” said Easley in the video. “But if it has to be made in China in a factory and shipped half way around the world, that might not be as resource-efficient. One of the first things you can do is buy American.”

You can watch the video here.

 

 

 

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Menards to add propane-refilling stations

BY Brae Canlen

In a pilot program at 37 stores, Menards will open a series of propane-fueling stations designed for propane-powered vehicles and cylinders used on gas grills and recreational vehicles. The program is a partnership with CleanFUEL USA, a leading supplier of propane autogas infrastructure and engine systems.

The home improvement retailer will conduct the pilot at Menards locations throughout Illinois, as well as its Eau Claire West store in Wisconsin. 

The new autogas fueling stations are a collaborative effort between CleanFUEL USA and Ferrellgas, a nationwide propane provider. CleanFUEL USA provided the dispenser and 1,000-gallon tanks, and Ferrellgas provided installation services and propane for each location. 

The autogas station project was funded through a $12 million grant from the Department of Energy’s (DOE) American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). Texas State Technical College (TSTC) serves as the lead grantee of the funds, which support the development of a national propane Autogas refueling network, incentives to convert school buses and other fleet vehicles to alternative fuels, and training for green jobs. 

In addition to installing the autogas fueling stations, Menards partnered with Icom North America to convert 140 new Ford pick-up trucks to propane autogas for store-operation use at the 37 Menards test locations. The Icom system allows the propane vehicle to enjoy similar drive-ability and performance to gasoline with reduced emissions and large fuel-cost savings. These same stores will also be receiving propane-powered forklifts to replace their existing diesel-powered forklifts, with the changeover already taking place at Eau Claire West. Menards also plans to steadily convert its store operation vehicles from gasoline and diesel to propane at other store locations, adding propane autogas fueling stations in the process.

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