Port of Eastport Cuts 40% on Electricity Bills Since Teaming with FEL Power

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As evidenced by the successful mainline conveyor testing at the Port of Eastport January 19, almost $8 million in upgrades to the Port of Eastport are near completion. Even prior to an official ribbon-cutting though, the Port has complemented new equipment, capabilities and diversified accounts with old-fashioned Yankee frugality. Through the management services of FEL Power, the Port of Eastport has gone Direct to Grid to supply its own electricity and is seeing roughly 40% cut from every bill.

Port of Eastport bulk conveyor system powered by electricity managed by FEL Power

The new Port of Eastport bulk conveyor system (at lower left) costs 40% less to operate than it would have just months ago (James Lowe Photograph)

'I was a little naive about the opportunities of Direct to Grid...Some people think it's more complicated than it really is. It's really quite simple,' says Chris Gardner, Director of the Port of Eastport.

As evidenced by the successful mainline conveyor testing at the Port of Eastport January 19, almost $8 million in upgrades to the Port of Eastport are near completion. Even prior to an official ribbon-cutting though, the Port has complemented new equipment, capabilities and diversified accounts with old-fashioned Yankee frugality.

Through the management services of FEL Power, the Port of Eastport has gone Direct to Grid to supply its own electricity and is seeing roughly 40% cut from every bill.

While the Port of Eastport’s recent expansion, unique USDA permit to ship livestock, and fresh contracts with a more varied clientele bode well, Port administrators are aware that shippers choose ports that contribute to their bottom line. Even the charge of an additional penny per ton can lead to sizeable losses in profits. Direct to Grid electricity allows the Port to maintain its competitive edge.

Says Gus Fromuth, Managing Director of FEL Power, who worked closely with Port of Eastport Director Chris Gardner on the Direct to Grid project, “The Port of Eastport is now better able to control the cost of one of its major expenditures: energy. In going Direct to Grid, it takes the middle man of a traditional utility out of the equation, and uses our management expertise to its advantage.”

Gardner notes that FEL, was part of a “well-concentrated team” that worked with the Maine PUC to achieve a 40% cut on the Port’s electricity rates from Bangor Hydro. As soon as the Port of Eastport went Direct to Grid, he says, it saw 40% total savings on its total electricity bill.

Gardner stresses the ease of the Direct to Grid process, saying, "I was a little naive about the opportunities of Direct to Grid" before Jack Cashman of Cashman Consulting in Bangor introduced the Port to FEL Power. "Some people think it's more complicated than it really is. It's really quite simple."

The expansion of the Port of Eastport is a transformative moment in its 34 years. Fromuth points to the Port Authority’s foresight in day-to-day operations as a harbinger of continued success. “Maine and Washington County are fortunate to have such a dynamic team working for their economic well-being.“

FEL Power (felpower.com) provides high-end energy management services in electricity and natural gas. Its unique Direct to Grid (or Self-Supply) model guides large-scale users into New England’s wholesale electricity market, guaranteeing them access to electricity at the lowest available cost. It is a member of the Freedom Energy Logistics family of companies, dedicated to obtaining power at the lowest possible price for New England consumers.

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Barbara Wilson
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