Siemens defends performance of NYC cogeneration plant

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A fraud investigation is being undertaken in the US into allegations that a Siemens power plant was built on the basis of false claims about its energy saving potential.

However Siemens is certain that it had has fulfilled its obligations, according to Post-Star news website.

Siemens claimed the cogeneration plant attached to Westmount Healthcare Facility would save Warren County NY at least $1.5m over five years but the county sheriff then became involved in order to investigate claims of impropriety.
Siemens Building Technologies
A Siemens spokeswoman disputed the conclusions of the subsequently released police investigative report on the project, saying the company is “troubled” at conclusions reached by police and an independent engineering firm.

“Siemens continues to believe that it has fully complied with its contractual obligations regarding the Westmount Health Facility cogeneration project,” spokeswoman Amanda Naiman said in a prepared statement. “Siemens disagrees with the conclusions in the sheriff’s report regarding any allegation of wrongdoing, misconduct or impropriety by Siemens or its employees.”

Naiman released a May 2014 letter that a company vice president penned to the county in which it claimed the natural gas cogeneration project has brought more than $1,835,159 in energy cost savings. That letter was in response to conclusions drawn by engineering firm EnerNOC, which was hired by the county Board of Supervisors to review the cogeneration plant’s performance and which found the savings weren’t as promised.

Manhattan-based Siemens Building Technologies are unhappy with the investigation, which began in 2011 and ended earlier this year, which determined that County Administrator Paul Dusek could be charged with official misconduct, a misdemeanour, for allegedly misinforming the county Board of Supervisors when he negotiated an energy-performance contract with Siemens in 2004.

A Siemens spokesperson told COSPP that the company and its representatives have cooperated at every stage of the inquiry into the project, including with regard to the audit by EnerNOC, Inc. of the facility’s performance. In a statement the company spokesperson said the company was troubled by conclusions drawn, 'including certain findings in the EnerNOC report and in the recently released report by the Sheriff’s Office, which appear to rely on a fundamental misunderstanding about the terms of the performance assurance agreement with the County, the energy savings at Westmount, and Siemens’ performance under the contract.'

To date, Siemens, who say they remain committed to addressing any concerns the County may have about the Westmount project, has never received a response to the letter from either the County or EnerNOC.  

The statement concludes that the cogeneration equipment at the Westmount facility has performed well, and the project as a whole has delivered real benefits to the County.

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