Portland Community College (PCC) in Oregon has commissioned the first of ten CHP fuel cell systems sites that will go into operation on the west coast of the US as part of a $2.8 million joint industry and government award.

The Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy and its Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) has given $1.4 million to Oregon-based ClearEdge Power to install 38 CHP fuel cell systems at ten different west coast businesses under the initiative.

The first two 5 kW systems were installed at PCC at the end of September and the remaining 36 units will be rolled out at the other additional locations over the next few months.

PNNL will analyse the engineering, economic, and environmental performance of the systems during the next five years but the laboratory already anticipates that it could reduce the fuel costs and carbon footprint of a commercial building by approximately 40 per cent, compared with conventional electricity use.

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