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San Leandro's Energy Efficiency Companies Go Global

The City of San Leandro-- which has retained 90% of its industrial base-- is home to three large-scale energy efficiency companies that have gone global, thanks to innovative technologies with international applications: Cleaire, Energy Recovery, Inc. and OSIsoft.

Cleaire
In December of 2008, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) established diesel emissions regulations requiring that fleets operating in California reduce diesel truck and bus emissions by at least 85% through retrofitting or replacing existing diesel engines. Since 2004, San Leandro-based Cleaire (pronounced klee-air) has designed, developed and manufactured CARB-verified diesel particulate filters to address this requirement.

Cleaire’s diesel particulate filters have a broad local reach. They can be found on most of the Bay Area’s 1,500 transit buses and many of the 1,300 buses used at the Port of Oakland. In September of 2010, Cleaire announced that it has built and shipped over 10,000 diesel particular filters to retrofit thousands of vehicles throughout North America.

Cleaire President and CTO Dr. Brad Edgar is confident that Cleaire’s technology will one day address pollution on an international scale. Pilot projects to retrofit buses in the city of Bejing and off-road construction equipment in South Korea are underway

“We’re in the process of exploring future possibilities for the international market,” Edgar said, adding that Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and Santiago, Chile are being explored as potential sites.

Whatever the future holds for Cleaire, Edgar is sure that the East Bay is the right place for his company.

First and foremost is our engineering team,” Edgar explained. “We have four PhD’s from UC Berkeley, and a very talented and capable workforce. We’re in a major metro area with strong air quality agencies. And we get good support from the Mayor’s office and the Chamber of Commerce. We really enjoy San Leandro and we’re glad we started out here." To learn more, visit http://www.cleaire.com.

Energy Recovery Inc.
The lack of access to clean water and sanitation kills thousands of people worldwide and negatively impacts the lives of many others. Desalination - the process of extracting fresh water from ocean water – is one solution to this problem. Until very recently, its prohibitively high cost has made it difficult to implement on a grand scale.

Energy Recovery Inc. (ERI) offers a cost-effective approach by reducing energy consumption at reverse-osmosis desalination plants by up to 60%. In total, the company’s products produce 1.6 billion gallons of potable water per day across the world.

Founded in 1992 and headquartered in San Leandro since 2000, ERI has offices in Spain, China and the United Arab Emirates. The majority of ERI's 6,000 devices have been sold outside the United States. Energy Recovery Inc's customer list includes contractors in Namibia, Malta, Cyprus, Venezuela and countries faced with severe fresh water shortages. In addition, forty-five plants are in various stages of development in the U.S. and the company expects the domestic market for its devices to expand after its first U.S. plant, planned for Carlsbad, California, is operational.

The company plans to increase the size of its workforce in 2011 as it builds manufacturing capacity in San Leandro. Though the majority of its customer base will remain outside the Bay Area, ERI has chosen to stay in the East Bay to ensure a talented workforce. For more information: http://www.energyrecovery.com.

OSIsoft
Since 1980, San Leandro’s OSIsoft has been a leader in the development and marketing of PI management software. Process Information, or “PI,” is information generated by systems that use electrical or mechanical equipment.

As of February 2011, the company’s 14,000 customers are in 107 countries. Iberdrola Renewables, a Spanish wind energy company, uses OSIsoft technology to aggregate information, measure and anticipate production, and create market forecasts.

Jenny Kennedy Linton is OSIsoft’s Executive VP of Operations and Administration who stated that the last three years have been particularly active in terms of global expansion. Between 2007 and 2010, the company opened new offices in China, Australia, and Moscow. Additional ones are slated for Paris, Madrid and Calgary. The company is also in the process of relocating its world headquarters from Frankfurt to London, which Linton views as “the center of global commerce.”

The company’s desire for expansion is rooted in a desire to better serve its customers, Linton explained.

"We’re opening global offices because want to be close to our customers. We want to be able to provide support to them in local languages and be available to go out and work with them directly. That is our reason for expansion.”

Linton said that the company’s leadership is also contemplating offices in India, Thailand, and Indonesia. She is excited about a new partnership with Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and will be moving into the management of “smart grids.”

Despite the company’s international presence, the company is more than happy with its East Bay home.

"We’ve been in business in San Leandro since 1980, and it’s been a great place for us. We like BART, we like being close to the Oakland airport, and we are able to attract a very talented, highly educated workforce here. This is the place to be.”

Company President J. Patrick Kennedy has a favorite quote about energy. “Invest in resources and your energy costs will continually rise. Invest in technology and they will continually decrease.”

"This is a good thesis,” Kennedy explains, “because although there are doubters that global warming is a result of human activity, NO ONE disagrees that conservation is good.” For more information, visit http://www.osisoft.com.

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