Eastern Oregon businesses identify and reduce energy waste


a picture of Pendleton, Oregon on a sunny day

In January, several Eastern Oregon businesses and organizations made a resolution to save energy and money by joining Energy Trust’s innovative training initiative for commercial and industrial customers, Strategic Energy Management, offered in Eastern Oregon.

Strategic Energy Management is a yearlong training provided by Energy Trust to organizations that want to improve energy efficiency. Working with professional energy coaches, participants learn to identify energy waste in their facilities and operations, and use management tools, practices and policies to keep their energy usage and costs as low as possible.

Organizations joining the cohort include:

“We know that organizations here are ready to take a more strategic approach to controlling their energy costs, but the technical services and support we provide haven’t been readily available in this area,” said Kathleen Belkhayat, program manager, Energy Trust. “Our emphasis on peer-to-peer learning in SEM will work well with Eastern Oregon’s close-knit business community.”

Cohort member organizations may be new to SEM, but they are all long-time participants of Energy Trust programs. Each of these organizations has made investments to reduce energy costs and improve the comfort and energy performance of their facilities. These Eastern Oregon participants are customers of Pacific Power and Cascade Natural Gas.

“Many of our customers are attracted to SEM as a way to provide technical staff training that would otherwise be quite costly,” said Belkhayat.

To date, more than 300 Oregon businesses, public agencies and institutions have taken part in one or more years of SEM training through Energy Trust.