Army to replace coal-fired facilities at Rock Island Arsenal in Illinois

Honeywell (NYSE: HON) and the U.S. Army on May 12 announced a $22.4-million modernization project at the Rock Island Arsenal (RIA) Garrison in Rock Island, Ill.

The project will help the Garrison eliminate its reliance on coal-fired heating and replace it with high-efficiency, gas-fired boilers that will reduce the RIA Garrison’s emissions and help the site comply with new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations. The upgrades will be funded by a 15-year energy savings performance contract from Honeywell — awarded by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The company guarantees the upgrades will generate enough savings each year to pay for the work, creating a self-funded project, which should reduce or even eliminate the need for up-front capital or additional taxpayer dollars.

The Honeywell-led improvements will also help the Garrison address recent changes by EPA to the Clean Air Act. The updated rule calls for a reduction of coal use or the installation of costly pollution control equipment in plants that burn fossil fuels.

“Deferred maintenance due to lack of financial resources is a common challenge for federal agencies and other public entities. However, there are low-risk options that can help overcome these barriers,” said John Rajchert, president of Honeywell Building Solutions. “Our work with the Rock Island Arsenal Garrison is a prime example of how organizations can make important infrastructure upgrades, leveraging guaranteed energy and operational savings to help fund projects.”

Honeywell will replace the existing coal-fired central steam plant with high-efficiency natural gas boilers at approximately 30 buildings. The revamp to the heating system is expected to reduce energy consumption by approximately 11% and water consumption by 12%. The work should also reduce annual greenhouse gas emissions by an estimated 20,800 metric tons. Honeywell and the RIA Garrison expect to finish the improvements by the fall of 2016.

“Evolving our operation to be more efficient and sustainable not only helps protect the environment, but also the well-being of the community, which we’ve been a part of for more than 150 years,” said Colonel Elmer Speights, Jr., commander of the Rock Island Arsenal Garrison.

A global leader in energy-saving technology and services, Honeywell said it has completed almost 5,700 guaranteed efficiency projects around the world, including upgrades at more than 150 U.S. government facilities and campuses.

About Barry Cassell 20414 Articles
Barry Cassell is Chief Analyst for GenerationHub covering coal and emission controls issues, projects and policy. He has covered the coal and power generation industry for more than 24 years, beginning in November 2011 at GenerationHub and prior to that as editor of SNL Energy’s Coal Report. He was formerly with Coal Outlook for 15 years as the publication’s editor and contributing writer, and prior to that he was editor of Coal & Synfuels Technology and associate editor of The Energy Report. He has a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University.