SEATTLE — The U.S. Department of Energy recognized the Washington State University Extension Energy Program, Olympia, Sunday (Nov. 21) with a 2004 Power Player Award for its work in energy efficiency with the Office of Industrial Technologies Clearinghouse.

Lee Link, WSU Energy Program’s Clearinghouse division manager, accepted the award at Seattle’s Qwest Field during the Nov. 21 Seattle Seahawks game against the Miami Dolphins. Presenting the award was Julie Riel, director of DOE’s Western regional office.

“We are really thrilled to receive the Power Player Award this year,” Link said. “This recognition is a testament to the world-class team at the WSU Energy Program.”

“Our Clearinghouse staff has provided energy efficiency and renewable energy technical assistance and resources to the Pacific Northwest and the United States for nearly 15 years,” Link said. “It’s really rewarding work because over the years we have been able to help thousands of commercial businesses, manufacturers, state and local governments, federal facilities and utilities.”

Jacob Fey, director of the WSU Energy Program and chair of the Tacoma Public Utility Board, was also in attendance for the presentation and game.

“Our clearinghouses are some of the areas where the WSU Energy Program is making a real difference,” Fey said.  “I am proud of the work of the clearinghouse staff and our many other projects that provide energy-related technical assistance.”

The OIT Clearinghouse has served U.S. industries since 1993. Typically, assistance comes directly from the WSU Energy Program’s  customer-service staff, professional engineers, energy specialists and research librarians — all of whom work together to help manufacturing plants implement energy and cost savings measures and technologies. This is usually done with industrial systems like motors, motor-driven equipment such as fans and pumps, steam systems, process heating, compressed air, heating and cooling.

Operated under contract with DOE, the WSU Energy Program’s technical assistance is free to its customers, so that they can easily take advantage of all the resources.

The WSU Energy Program also manages the EnergyIdeas Clearinghouse as well as the Western Area Power Administration Energy Services Clearinghouse. The organization also began operating the nationwide Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Information Center for DOE in January 2004.

“We receive thousands and thousands of inquiries through our clearinghouses every year from all over the country,” Link said. “Our goal is to provide objective information and assistance to help professionals make decisions that improve operations, save energy and money.”

According to Link, the WSU Energy Program hosts information-rich energy Web sites. It also serves customers one-on-one via toll-free telephone hotlines, e-mail and fax. It offers individual consultations, delivers customized documents, distributes and supports energy software tools and connects clients with other experts in the field.

“All Clearinghouse users benefit from our range of expertise,” Link said.  “WSU Energy Program staff is made up of professionals in industrial and mechanical engineering, applied building science, renewable resources, climate change, agriculture energy, distributed generation and software development.”

The WSU Energy Program is a self-supported department within the university.  It receives project funding from federal government agencies, federal power marketing agencies, the private sector and a number of other sources. It houses some 60 employees in Olympia, Spokane and other satellite offices, and its customers include industrial plant managers, private consultants, commercial businesses, government agencies and utilities.

For more information, contact Sheila Riggs, communications manager for the WSU Energy Program, at (360) 956-2000.