March 1, 2004 

    Adams County could save $55,000 annually at the Adams County Courthouse in energy costs, according to two energy experts.

    An architectural firm, Berggren and Woll, and engineering firm, Fred Thompson and Associates, both of Lincoln, conducted the energy audit. The $2,500 audit had been approved by the Adams County Board of Supervisors last October.

    Representatives for the firms presented the results of the audit to the Board of Supervisors on Tuesday. The two firms made their analyses based on a physical inspection of the building, blueprints of the courthouse and information provided by custodian Marvin Hartmann. The firms proposed six measures for energy conservation.

    The two firms recommended six specific plans of action which the county could take to cut energy-related costs at the courthouse:

bulletReduce the county’s sewer fee by separately metering water that does not go into the city’s sanitary sewer. This would save an estimated $9,000 annually.
bulletInstall a separate heating and air-conditioning system in the sheriff’s office. Turning off the courthouse’s main system when the building is closed could further cut costs by $13,000.
bulletInstall variable volume fans. This would reduce energy requirements of fans that move more air than necessary for heating and air-conditioning units and save $9,000.
bulletInstall glass panels on the existing glass to minimize heating and air-conditioning losses, which would save an estimated $6,000.
bulletInstall new dampers, cutting another $550.
bulletReplace pre-cooling coils in the air-conditioning system, which would save about $1,300.

The board members agreed that the majority of the suggestions merited additional inquiry into the matter. “It’s something that has to be done in due time,” Supervisor Lavern Mosier remarked. “If kept up-to-date, we will have a useful building.”

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