Municipal Water-Wastewater Initiative


This initiative focuses on increasing demand for improved facility energy performance and encouraging product and service suppliers to adopt energy efficiency as standard operating procedure. As well, efforts aim to transform the market for water supply and wastewater services by enhancing the impact of local energy efficiency programs and coordinating efforts with stakeholder industries.

Ultimately, members focus is on:

  1. increasing demand for improved facility energy performance with energy efficiency products and services within the municipal water and wastewater sector.
  2. transforming the delivery of products and services to the municipal water-wastewater sector by encouraging industry stakeholders to incorporate energy efficiency as a standard business practice.
How to participate

The initiative offers a graduated or phased approach to demonstrate the benefits of energy efficiency to operators and city managers and to generate support for facility energy management strategies. As such, members offer optional levels of participation:

Level 1: Programs to Promote, Educate, and Train

  • Commit to providing staff, contractual resources, or other resources as needed, to support energy efficiency projects within municipal water supply and wastewater treatment customers, either through an existing program or through a dedicated energy efficiency program.
  • Use the RFP template to promote a facility energy efficiency message to water and wastewater customers in your area. Includes education and training activities.
  • Notify CEE about current program offerings for inclusion in the program summary.

Level 2: Programs that Support Energy Saving Projects

  • Use the RFP template to complete a minimum of three efficiency projects. Share results with the other initiative participants.
  • Complete at least one case study documenting successful project implementation for a water-wastewater utility.
  • Experience a 20 percent increase in the number of water and wastewater facilities participating in energy efficiency programs in your area, or recruit program participation from the largest municipal water and wastewater facilities in your area.

Level 3: Programs that Support Facility Energy Management

  • Use the RFP template to assist water and wastewater customers to monitor facility energy use, helping them to identify, prioritize, and implement projects to improve facility performance.
  • Document project impact in terms of improvement facility energy performance. Share the results with other initiative participants.
  • Complete at least one case study documenting successful project implementation for a water-wastewater utility in your area.

Level 4: Develop New Program Resources

  • Assist CEE in identifying new program materials, such as case studies, research, or tools, that are currently lacking or outdated.
  • Participate in collaborative efforts to develop needed program materials in partnership with the water and wastewater industry as necessary.
  • Participate in collaborative research projects, such as piloting the water utility energy index or energy performance rating system.
  • Contribute toward funding development efforts.


Results obtained from the nine-member initiative indicate that, in spite of the small number of program leaders, efficiency programs achieve between 1-2 million kWh savings annually. Market penetration is estimated at <1% to 7%, with two program leaders estimating 20 to 30% penetration.

Blowers currently account for 50 percent of energy consumption at wastewater treatment facilities. With CEE leadership, the blower industry is adopting new test procedures that inspire customer confidence in product energy performance claims. The new test procedures provide better information to customers and impact purchasing decisions for wastewater blowers on a market scale.