CHP Advantages

The definition of Combined Heat and Power (CHP) is the on-site simultaneous generation of two forms of energy (heat and electricity) from a single fuel or energy source.

It is also referred to as co-generation or distributed generation. CHP generates electrical and/or mechanical power and recovers waste heat for facility heating and cooling. CHP provides significant advantages for energy efficiency given that over two-thirds of the fuel used to generate electricity in the United States is lost as heat.

>> View a list of completed GEM Energy CHP systems.

A CHP system significantly reduces the amount of energy you use to operate your facility or process while also providing a reliable power source that will carry your facility through a power outage.

CHP: Cleaner, Less Expensive, Reliable

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Combined Heat and Power Partnership has awarded GEM Energy its 2013 Certificate of Avoided GHG Emissions. The certificate is achieved for the amount of carbon emissions avoided last year – expressed in metric tons and the equivalent annual electricity use of U.S. homes – by the CHP project data submitted on GEM Energy installations. This estimate is calculated by comparing the emissions from each CHP system to the total emissions from conventional separate heat and power (i.e. grid electricity and on-site thermal generation). The certificate also includes the cumulative carbon emissions avoided by these installations.

GEM Energy will work with you to determine if carbon intensity reduction can add financial value to your project either immediately or in the future.



Total system fuel efficiencies of more than 80%

Reduces operational energy costs and reduces carbon emissions

Provides power reliability through fuel flexibility

Allows continuous operation in the event of a power outage and mitigates risk

Augments or replaces legacy HVAC Systems

Use of thermal energy reduces the need for traditional boiler and chillers

Clean air emissions

Streamlined permitting and the power it produces is “cleaner” than the utility’s output

Comprehensive project delivery

Project is engineered to perform and is maintained through lifecycle

Guide to Using Combined Heat and Power for Enhancing Reliability and Resiliency in Buildings

During and after Hurricane Sandy, combined heat and power (CHP) enabled a number of critical infrastructure and other facilities to continue their operations when the electric grid went down. Time and again, CHP has proved its value as an alternative source of power and thermal energy (heating and cooling) during emergencies, and demonstrated how it can be a sound choice in making energy infrastructure more resilient in the face of extreme weather events.

To assist State and local officials and others involved in the rebuilding process, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) developed this guidance on CHP with the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). Its purpose is to provide practical information on CHP, including what factors must be considered when configuring a CHP system to operate independently of the electricity grid, and what steps are involved in a typical CHP project development process.