2014 Event Activities

May 8th Tour Schedule

Efficiency Exchange's third day is dedicated to group tours of great places of interest to people in the utility industry. Come see where our region’s power is generated! Or check out the labs where the EE technology, like the LED, is first tested! Most tours start at 8am and transportation will be provided from the Three Rivers Convention Center.

Except for the nuclear power tours, you may also drive to the sites yourself.

Sign up for tours with Douglas Tsoi at dtsoi@neea.org.

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, 8:00am to 11:30am. Prior registration and approval is required.

Tour Host: Sandi Edgemon, City of Richland

Address: 902 Battelle Blvd, Richland, WA 99354

PNNL is one among ten U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) national laboratories managed by DOE's Office of Science.

  • Lab Homes is where PNNL scientists test out ductless heap pumps, super-insulating windows and other energy-efficient devices before they go to market.
  • The Electricity Infrastructure Operations Center (EIOC) is the cutting edge of electric grid research and development. Come see where the grid operators are trained on the latest technology.
  • You know about the L-Prize, right? The Lighting Testing laboratory is where PNNL does testing on lighting products for the Solid State Lighting Program and where the initial testing for the DOE L-Prize lamp was done. The original test bulbs are still burning!

Optional: HAMMER Training Center, 11:30am-12:45pm
HAMMER, located at DOE’s Hanford Site, is a federal training center dedicated to train emergency responders on hazardous materials handling, environmental, health and safety, and emergency response. Tour the sniper training ground. Learn about nuclear cleanup and hazardous cleanup. See a real SCUD missile.

Address: 2890 Horn Rapids Road Richland, WA 99354

Nine Canyon Wind Farm 8:00am-10:30am. (Note: Since the wind farm is located on private property, the only way to access it will be to take the Van provided or to follow immediately after the Van to the wind farm. You cannot rendezvous with the group there.)

Tour Hosts: Tom Schumacher, Benton PUD, and Jennifer Knighten, Energy Northwest.

Renewable energy at its source! The Nine Canyon Wind Project is located just south of Kennewick. Constructed in three phases between 2002 and 2007, the project includes 63 wind turbines with a maximum generating potential of 96 megawatts of electricity.

McNary Dam, 11am-12:30pm. This tour is limited to 25 visitors, so register soon. You must be a U.S. citizen and wear closed-toe shoes.

Tour Host: Tom Osborn, BPA Engineer.

Renewable energy at its source, part 2! McNary Dam is a 980 megawatt dam operated by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The dam spans the Columbia River and is located a mile east of the town of Umatilla, Oregon, and 8 miles north of Hermiston, Oregon. The dam provides for slackwater navigation, hydroelectric power generation, recreation, wildlife habitat, salmon passage and incidental irrigation.


Hanford B Reactor, 7:30am-10:30am. (BUS ONLY)

Tour Host: US DOE Richland Staff.

See a rare piece of American history! The Hanford B Reactor was the first large-scale nuclear reactor ever built and, as part of the Manhattan Project, produced the plutonium used in the “Fat Man” bomb dropped over Nagasaki, Japan, in August of 1945. It has been designated a U.S. National Historic Landmark. There are stops along the way to see some of the sites connected with the history of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation.


Columbia Generating Station, 8:00am-12:30pm. (BUS ONLY) This tour is limited to 20 visitors, so register soon.

Tour Hosts: Laura Scheele and John Dobken, Energy Northwest

The Columbia Generating Station is the Northwest’s only commercial nuclear energy facility. Licensed by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission in 1983, Columbia first produced electricity in 1984 and generates 1,170 megawatts of electricity. That is about 10 percent of the electricity generated in Washington and enough electricity to power the entire city of Seattle. If you are a nuclear power enthusiast, this tour is for you. Prior registration and approval is required and it is for U.S. Residents only.

Energy Efficiency, Agriculture, and Winemaking, 8:00am-12:30pm. This tour has been filled.

Tour Host: Vic Hubbard, Franklin PUD

Address: 5405 Industrial Way Pasco, WA  99301

Twin City Foods, a food processing plant, right in one of the best vegetable growing areas of the world. What’s more, it has done a large scale lighting retrofit and a substantial energy efficient refrigeration upgrade. Learn about the best practices in agriculture - from planting to harvesting to processing - that ensure that the highest quality vegetables become the highest quality food.

Tour Host: Eric Miller, Benton REA

Address: 34715 N. DeMoss Rd.  Benton City, WA 99320

Come learn about sustainable viticulture! Terra Blanca Winery and Estate Vineyard‘s entire grape handling, crushing, and pressing operations have been carefully designed to maximize wine quality and be as energy efficient as possible. See how the production facility is designed so that wine is created via gravity flow; eliminating all pumps that might induce flavor degrading shear (a fancy way of saying wine is not agitated when it goes from barrel to bottle) and thus saving energy. Wines are stored in naturally cooled in energy-efficient wine caves, much like the original caves in France. The winery may charge visitors $10 for the tour, which will include winetasting.

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