About District Energy
As a District Energy system, Seattle Steam offers a centralized service providing heat (thermal energy) to a large number of buildings within downtown Seattle. District Energy systems are in widespread use throughout the United States and around the world because with a relatively small footprint, they can serve a large number of buildings and institutions. Click here to see a video that explains how District Energy systems operate and the role they can play in a sustainable energy supply future.
In 2003, Seattle Steam was honored with the "System of the Year" award by the International District Energy Association (IDEA), which recognizes exemplary District Energy systems that provide high-level performance and service to their communities.
Benefits of District Energy
District Energy systems offer many sound economic and environmental benefits:
- District Energy eliminates the capital costs and space required to buy and operate individual boilers in buildings.
- A District Energy system greatly reduces many of the operating and maintenance staff costs by eliminating the need for highly trained on-site maintenance and operating personnel, as well as annual maintenance contracts.
- District Energy systems operate around the clock with stable/reliable infrastructure, and have the proven ability to withstand major events, such as earthquakes and severe weather, without interruption.
- A system like Seattle Steam's creates heating efficiencies by capturing and reusing waste heat and energy before it leaves the plant. Watch a video about combined heat and power resiliency
- Seattle Steam has the flexibility to incorporate renewable energy resources to fuel the production of steam and reduce its carbon footprint, as well as that of its customers.
- Buildings on District Energy systems take only the amount of energy they require. There is no need for on-site boiler plants that must be designed large enough for peak heating needs.
Learn more about District Energy by visiting the International District Energy Association website.