08/31/16 : Reed Brown

Walking the walk: Advancing energy efficiency in Boston

One of the most important pillars of our work here at the Alliance to Save Energy is our Associate membership, who represent nearly 130 companies and organizations actively working to advance energy efficiency in their respective sectors. Read on to learn about the concrete ways our Associates are making real advancements in Boston’s energy efficiency.


Earlier this month, I facilitated a “field trip” for congressional staff to learn more about the new technologies and policies that have produced significant improvements in Massachusetts’ energy efficiency over the last few years. (After all, Boston is currently ranked as the most energy-efficient city in the nation and Massachusetts in general is an efficiency superstar.) I was not surprised – but nonetheless pleased – to observe the many ways that Alliance Associates are leading the pack in providing the infrastructure and technology for many of Boston’s most notable efficiency efforts. 

During the field trip, we visited several facilities – including a sustainability hub, restaurant and a brewery – that are all leading on energy efficiency or clean energy. But what stood out to me in particular was the presence of our Associate members’ products and services at many of our stops. Indeed, it was impossible not to notice the many examples of Alliance Associates helping these companies, organizations and institutions achieve their goals.

First stop: National Grid Sustainability Hub

Our first stop was the National Grid Sustainability Hub in Worcester, Massachusetts. The hub serves as an educational tool for the community to learn about energy efficiency and is set up to resemble a typical home. As I walked through, I was proud to see that our Associate membership was well-represented: There was a fan from Big Ass Solutions in the living room, a washer/dryer unit from Whirlpool and lights from Osram Sylvania. It was remarkable see these products all in one place, especially one designed to highlight energy-efficient technologies in the home.

Savings on the menu: Stockyard restaurant

For dinner, we visited the Stockyard Restaurant, a delicious American tavern. While the food was excellent, I was perhaps even more excited to see that the restaurant features EcoThermal Filters technology that is helping the restaurant save thousands of dollars per year. The EcoThermal Filters technology uses waste heat from cooking appliances to heat water, which may not sound exciting, but can lead to savings of $4,000-$6,000 for an average restaurant.

Brewing up efficiency: Harpoon Brewery

Trane, an Ingersoll Rand brand, was also commonly seen throughout our trip. I was pleased to observe large Trane air conditioning units outside the buildings of several places we stopped. In fact, at the Harpoon Brewery, I had the chance to enjoy first-hand this energy-efficient air conditioning unit in the Beer Hall and breakrooms.

Associates leading in efficiency

Over our three days in Boston, I visited many interesting locales and I was able to learn about, and see firsthand, some very important work being done to improve energy efficiency across sectors. More often than not, the name I saw on an appliance or lightbulb or thermostat was that of an Alliance Associate member. Seeing these great examples of energy efficiency in action provided great insight on how impactful these products are in the real world and how they are helping Massachusetts – and the nation as a whole –  become more energy-efficient.