System Benefits

What are the benefits of district cooling and heating – chilled water and steam?

  • Reliable. TECO’s systems offer exceptional service reliability because they’re automated and monitored around the clock.
  • Cost-effective. Because we serve many customers, TECO uses larger, more efficient and higher-quality equipment than a single institution could justify.
  • Environmentally sound. You don’t have to burn fuels or store refrigerants and chemicals on site. TECO takes care of that at our plants, employing more stringent emission controls than individual buildings.
  • Lower cost. Because you don’t need to invest in boilers or chillers, you can reduce your capital requirements as well as operating, maintenance and labor costs.
  • Energy efficient. We monitor our systems around the clock to ensure the most efficient use of energy. Plus you only use as much steam or chilled water as needed and don’t have to run chillers or boilers at full throttle.
  • Easy operation and maintenance. District heating and cooling can be used simultaneously at any load since both are always available.
  • Flexible design. With less space allocated for heating and cooling equipment, architects and engineers have greater design flexibility.

What are the benefits of combined heat and power?

Other alternative energy technologies may get more media attention, but combined heat and power (CHP) is gradually making inroads, gaining attention and momentum across the country. Why? CHP technology has a successful track record; does not require new research be conducted to make it work; and results in energy efficiency, emission reductions and cost savings over and over again.

Here are the basics: Combined heat and power is an efficient, clean and reliable approach to generating power and thermal energy from a single fuel source. Standard power plants effectively use just one-third of the fuel they burn to produce electricity. Two-thirds of the fuel used to produce electricity ends up being rejected or “wasted” up the smokestack. By using this waste heat – effectively recycling it – to produce heating or cooling, efficiencies go up and emissions go down.

TECO’s combined heat and power (CHP) unit …

  • significantly reduces greenhouse gas emissions and regional air pollutants, equal to the emissions produced while generating electricity for more than 4,000 homes, and
  • increases our district energy system’s efficiency to 68%.

On-site CHP and stored chilled water further improves TECO’s reliability, which is essential to patient care and medical research.

  • The project is expected to save $200 million for TECO and our customers by 2026.
  • The project created or sustained more than 1,000 direct and indirect jobs.
  • The expansion positions TECO to grow along with the Texas Medical Center.

Employees Focused on Excellence and Lifelong Learning

Whether it's through on-the-job training or classes at a local college, TECO's employees are striving to add to their knowledge base and enhance customer service and system reliability.



MADE to Help

You’ve probably seen the images on TV: Large utility trucks leaving your area to help repair downed power lines caused by a major disaster elsewhere in the country. Everyone lends a hand. The district energy industry, too, is ready to respond.


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