An environmental resource for East Tennessee Businesses

Eco Travel Center in Crossville completes energy saving projects

Eco Travel Plaza in Crossville, Tenn. will unveil its energy efficient remodel next week.

The Eco Travel Plaza, in partnership with the East Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition, has implemented or is planning up to 40 total initiatives to increase the site's overall energy efficiency, and provide cleaner, healthier options. Emissions reductions and eliminating unnecessary diesel fuel use are key parts of the effort.

The site received a $580,000 grant from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2009 to install Truck Stop Electrification equipment from two vendors at its parking spots, reducing engine idling. The center will use a 35kw solar system to offset some of the costs.

"With the EPA grant we had an opportunity, but we wanted to be more creative. We chose to add to the benefits of anti-idling technology by further reduce emissions by replacing grid electricity with solar. Then we sought to save other energy usage by replacing inefficient equipment. ... Our goal now is to further reduce our energy footprint, and become energy neutral," said Don Demko, Eco Travel Plaza owner.

In addition to the TSE equipment and solar system, other initiatives include:

LED exterior lights and energy efficient indoor lighting and HVAC
Automatic shut-off faucets, waterless urinals and water pressure reducers
Recycling of paper, glass, plastics onsite and recycling used cooking oil for biodiesel production
Power Controller to reduce electricity use and peak demand

Two electric vehicle DC Fast Charge stations and an electronics recycling center are also planned.
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