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Encina Wastewater adopts aggressive energy plan, announces Gold Awards recipients

The agency responsible for a large chunk of North County wastewater treatment service has just completed its development of a strategic plan on energy and emissions.

The Encina Wastewater Authority, which serves around 300,000 residents in northwestern San Diego County, released an outline of its Energy & Emissions Strategic Plan on Wednesday.

The plan outlines EWA’s future priorities and direction with respect to energy consumption and production, with an objective of energy independence -- defined by the authority as 95 percent self-generation of electricity demand by its facility. Six projects were outlined in the plan to that end.

Called for is implementing general energy efficiency measures, installing biogas treatment, converting waste to energy with existing digesters and adding a fifth -- and later a sixth -- cogeneration engine to the plant. The creation of an administration building chiller is also planned. It will use waste heat generated by the cogeneration engines to cool the building.

Implementation will require a total capital investment of $14 million across 15 years. The improvements would be financed in part by reduced costs for purchased energy.

Based in Carlsbad, EWA is jointly owned by the cities of Carlsbad, Vista and Encinitas, along with the Vallecitos Water District, Buena Sanitation District and the Leucadia Wastewater District .

According to the wastewater authority's LeeAnn Warchol, the six agencies will share in the balance of costs.

Encina Wastewater also recently publicized the winners of its Gold Awards, given earlier this year and recognizing 10 North County businesses for demonstrating full compliance with their industrial wastewater discharge permits in 2010.

Recipients of the awards included: Vista’s Seaspine Inc. and the Vista office of GE Osmonics; San Marcos-based Hughes Circuits Inc., Natural Alternatives International, Hollandia Dairy and Metal Etch Services Inc.; and the Carlsbad locations of Select Supplements Inc., Carlsbad Technology Inc. and CVI Melles Griot.

Hubbard Enterprises, a plumbing support manufacturer in Vista, received a 16-year award for achieving full compliance since the inception of the awards program in 1995.

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