‘We are being very aggressive with energy efficiency’: Ivins resort will power its lights through internet lines

ST. GEORGE — People are using the internet to read this article. And Black Desert Resort, currently under construction in Ivins, will use the same ethernet network that will transmit the internet throughout the resort to power its lights and other items. 

Two large cranes being used to build Black Desert Resort dominate the horizon in Ivins, Utah, May 19, 2022 | Photo by Chris Reed, St. George News

Known as “power over ethernet” (PoE), the technology uses the same cords that transmit the internet to transport electricity. The resort says all of its lighting, guest rook door card readers and security system and cameras will be PoE-powered. 

Introduced in 2003, it’s not necessarily a new technology. But it rarely has been used on as large a scale as what is being done in Ivins. According to the resort’s developer, Black Desert will have the world’s largest power over ethernet installation for a resort. 

“We are being very aggressive with energy efficiency,” Enlaw LLC owner Patrick Manning told St. George News. “Power over Ethernet allows a huge portion of this to happen.”

The resort will include a hotel, residences and a retail boardwalk along with a professionally designed golf course.

According to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), power over ethernet transmits electricity alongside data over the same standard data cables that are used to send wired internet. 

The biggest advantages, the IEEE says, include being able have a single line supplying both power and internet to some IT devices such as cameras and computers. With power consumption a growing concern, it also provides another source of electricity away from the existing power grid. 

Manning said that alongside having its own water supply that won’t be using any of the existing water supply in Ivins, this also means Black Desert Resort will not be drawing as much off the city and Washington County’s existing power supply.

“The extent in which Black Desert Resort is utilizing power over ethernet will result in the largest resort in the world using this incredible energy-saving technology,” Manning said. 

There’s also a financial gain to be made by the resort with its PoE system. 

Stock photo of the RJ45 ethernet cord | Photo by Bet_Noire/iStock/Getty Images Plus, St. George News

Manning said the resort could be receiving as much as a $150 million loan from a state and federal program designed to encourage efficient and renewable energy usage. 

The Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy, or C-PACE, program was initiated by the U.S. Department of Energy but relies on states to actually create the agencies that administer and award funding. 

“The intent is to create a governmental link to incentivize and cover the financial cost of energy efficiency,” municipal bond attorney Randy Larsen told the Ivins City Council May 19 during a presentation about Black Desert Resort’s C-PACE funding.

There are 38 states with C-PACE programs. Utah’s is a pet project of State Senate Speaker Stuart Adams, who sponsored the bill that created the Utah C-PACE in 2017. 

Manning said the resort has qualified for a $150 million loan and is finalizing terms. If it is that much, it would be the largest C-PACE reward in U.S. history. Up until now, the largest C-PACE funding was $89 million for carbon-reduction renovations to the 111 Wall Street building in New York City, according to Forbes.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2022, all rights reserved.

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