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The Governor’s Office of Energy Management and Conservation (OEMC) and Pollution Prevention Advisory Board (PPAB) working in cooperation with the Department of Human Services Business Enterprise Program for the Blind (BEP), announced a project to reduce state agency energy usage and costs. The PPAB provided grant funding to purchase USA Technologies’ VendingMiser energy control devices, which reduce energy consumption on cold beverage machines. OEMC and the BEP vendors, which administer the state vending machine programs, are coordinating the installation of over 200 VendingMisers. The project is expected to save approximately $15,600 per year for taxpayers.

VendingMiser was selected because it is able to control the electrical usage of the vending machine. It saves energy by using an infrared sensor that powers down a cold beverage machine when occupancy levels indicate no activity. The vending machine automatically powers up at appropriate intervals, independent of occupancy, to ensure that the beverages stay cold.

In an earlier test conducted by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment/Sustainability Program, nine VendingMisers were installed on cold beverage machines. These machines used 41% less electricity, which is an approximate annual savings of $78. Most importantly, the machines experienced no reduction in sales, which is important to vending machine managers. Another benefit is that the controllers, compressors and lights are used less and this extends the life of the machine and reduces overall maintenance and repair costs.

“This is an exciting development. Blind vendors have appreciated the opportunity to serve state and federal employees and their guests. As chairman of our elected committee of blind managers, we are always searching for ways to develop partnerships which will better serve, save money for our host agencies and conserve our valuable natural resources.” Kevan Worley, Director BEP.

“Governor Owens called for ‘greener government’ in his 2005 State of the State Address. This project is an example of how state agencies can incorporate business practices that save money and are good for the environment,” said Rick Grice, OEMC director. “Using an energy savings device like VendingMiser just makes sense. The devices offer the potential for significant dollar savings for state agencies by saving money through reduced energy and maintenance costs.

Additionally, the return on investment is realized in just a little more than one year, which means cash-strapped agencies can redirect funds to other needed expenditures.”

OEMC worked with BEP to identify which building vending machines would receive the most benefit from this energy control device. Education and installation information on VendingMiser was provided to building managers by OEMC, to encourage the acceptance of this energy conservation device. Some of the participating state agencies include the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Personal Administration.

The devices were installed during the spring. OEMC and BEP have received enthusiastic feedback about the VendingMisers and are fielding more requests for the devices. The devices are available on a commercial basis and to the public. For more information on this project, visit

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