Santa Gets Out of the
Red and Into the Green
(A Christmas Fable)
Santa and Mrs. Claus were busy reviewing the naughty and nice list when Archibald, the elf in charge of North Pole facilities, approached them with concerns of increased utility and operational expense. He was writing large checks monthly to Pole Gas & Electric and his HVAC equipment was aging and costing a lot to maintain. The diminishing productivity of the elfin labor force was due to the fact that he had to re-direct many of them from their toy making to maintenance just to keep things functioning. Mrs. Claus warned, "we need to be cautious about new investments because of the planned summer expansion of our stables and workshops."
Just then a smoke alarm sounded and Gertrude, Santa's Chef in Charge of the kitchens, ran in announcing, "the apprentice bakers have burned some Christmas cookies." She reminded Santa that she had warned him that the kitchen exhaust system needed replacement, and with nothing done to solve the problem, this was the result. Archibald added to Santa's woes by suggesting that the elves, who should be joyfully singing while they worked, spent most of their time grumbling about the awful temperature in the workshop and even threatened to go home before wrapping all the presents. Clearly, something had to be done quickly to make the elves comfortable, motivated and productive. And, to keep the expansion plans moving, they had to find a way to pay for energy efficiency improvements.
Santa went back to his list, looking for someone he could trust. Cooper Oates Air Conditioning was on his nice list so he gave them a call. Their "Green Guy" was working hard to get back on the nice list since selling his brother's Christmas skateboard, so he happily agreed to snowshoe and kayak to the North Pole, immediately.
With the goal of assisting Mr. and Mrs. Claus' move from the "red" into the "green," he arrived prepared with the COAC verification and monitoring toolbox. The entire North Pole Campus was Energy Star benchmarked, followed by a detailed building assessment using the Air Advice system. The data was transmitted to COAC Intergalactic HQ using the wireless remote reporting system. The engineering, construction and service teams reviewed Santa's challenges and came up with a host of solutions to reduce energy usage, increase thermal comfort, extend the life cycle of working equipment, and propose the replacement of others.
The energy assessment verified that the best area for saving energy was to upgrade the outdated pneumatic mechanical controls with direct digital controls. A few of the old workshop units needed replacement with new high-efficiency ones, but most of the units just needed quarterly quality maintenance to keep them working efficiently. Out in the stables there was an ongoing problem with reindeer "exhaust," and a new ventilation system was required to "freshen" the air. To assist Santa with the upgrade costs, COAC was able to bundle all of the work into an energy efficiency financing that was almost completely paid for with the resulting energy savings.
Santa agreed with the assessment and contracted for work to begin immediately. The COAC team worked quickly to keep the elves production on schedule. When completed, Santa was able to save money, monitor the mechanical systems using his smartphone and laptop, decrease his energy use, keep Mrs. Claus' expansion plans moving forward, and most importantly keep on schedule for Christmas. And Mrs. Claus loved the idea of investing in their building rather than sending checks to the utility company.
Though completely mystified by the complexity of the whole process, he was delighted with the result. The twinkle returned to Santa's eye as a hearty and robust "HO, HO, HO!" burst from his lungs.
Merry Christmas To All !