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If you want to know more about energy efficiency, renewable energy and energy management solutions, you’ve come to the right place. The Tennessee Energy Education Initiative provides training, tools, and potential funding options to help Tennessee organizations take control of their energy usage. Learn how we can help yours.



May 2014 Online Newsletter

Welcome to the Tennessee Energy Education Initiative (TEEI) May 2014 newsletter.  We hope you enjoy the latest news, information, and resources to help individuals, businesses and organizations in Tennessee take control of their energy usage.

Recent Events

Environmental Show of the South

TDEC OEP Director Molly Cripps moderated a panel presentation on “New Entrants in Electric Generation in the Tennessee Valley” at the 43rd Environmental Show of the South (ESOS) in Gatlinburg on April 30. The panel was comprised of experts in energy law and federal regulations, and the session was approved for continuing legal education credits.  The presentation will be made available on the TDEC ESOS website and TNEnergy.org.

Upcoming National Events

TechConnect World Innovation Conference and Expo, National Innovation Summit, and National SBIR/STTR Conference

Gaylord National Convention Center in Washington, D.C. will be host to the three concurrent events from June 15-18 featuring the TechConnect World Innovation Conference and Expo, the National Innovation Summit, and the National SBIR/STTR Conference. TechConnect is the world’s largest multi-sector conference and marketplace of vetted innovations, innovators and technology business developers and funders. The conference and expo cover industry programs ranging from advanced materials and electronics to energy efficiency and advanced manufacturing.  In support of the White House and Congressional call for innovation commercialization initiatives, the National Innovation Summit and Showcase delivers the world’s largest showcase of industry-vetted emerging-technologies ready for commercialization. Finally, the Small Business Innovation Research Conference is intended to encourage small businesses to engage with federal agencies in research and development opportunities, with potential for commercialization.

Recent News and Reports

WHEEL continues to move possibilities in residential energy efficiency financing

A new public-private partnership, known as the Warehouse for Energy Efficiency Loans (WHEEL), is opening the market for energy efficiency lending in the residential sector.  WHEEL is a collaboration between Citi, the Pennsylvania Treasury Department, Renewable funding, the Energy Programs Consortium, the National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO), and the U.S. Department of Energy. Unsecured energy efficiency loans are provided to homeowners through a government or utility sponsored program. WHEEL then provides private capital to fund the loans and sponsors provide credit enhancements. After loans are repaid, sponsors can choose to reinvest their returns to support additional loans in their communities.  Programs are currently operating in Pennsylvania (Keystone HELP) and Kentucky (Kentucky Home Performance).

U.S. Department of Energy announces $10M funding opportunity to advance zero-emission cargo transport vehicles and technologies

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) recently issued a funding opportunity announcement of $10M to “demonstrate and deploy innovative alternative transportation technologies for cargo vehicles” in an effort to reduce petroleum use, carbon emissions, oil imports and air pollution. DOE is seeking to collect data on the performance and cost of technologies and to determine their feasibility for commercialization. The opportunity is available to local governments and private companies, and federal funds must be matched with 50% cost share. Applications are due June 11, and the expected date for selection notifications is August 14.

USDA announces competitive funding for Renewable Energy for America Program (REAP) grants and loans

The United States Department of Agriculture has announced funding for grants and/or guaranteed loans to help agricultural producers and rural small businesses make energy efficiency improvements to their facilities, including the purchase and installation of renewable energy systems, with the goal of reducing energy costs and consumption in rural areas and to improve the economic and environmental quality in smaller communities. Eligible applicants must be located in communities of 50,000 or fewer people. Eligible businesses must meet the Small Business Administration’s definition of a small business, and agricultural producers must derive at least 51% of their gross annual income from agricultural activities. Financing and grants, or a combination thereof, are available for projects that range from $5,000 to $25M. Funds will be allocated on competitive basis as applications are received. Applications are due on Monday, July 7 at 4:30PM and can be found online at: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/TN-Energy.html.

ACEEE releases New State and Local Policy Database

The American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEE) released a new and improved State and Local Policy Database that serves as a repository for state and local policies and programs under several categories: government, utilities, transportation, buildings, combined heat and power, and appliance standards. Users can access information about state and local policies that encourage energy efficiency, and can compare state and city approaches to particular policy areas. The database is available online at: http://database.aceee.org/.

U.S. Department of Energy’s Clean Cities program releases “Plug-In Electric Vehicle Readiness Scorecard.”

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)’s Clean Cities program has launched the “Plug-In Electric Vehicle Readiness Scorecard” through its Alternative Fuels Data Center.

MTA Adds Seven Electric Buses to Nashville’s Music City Circuit

Metro Nashville’s Transit Authority (MTA) has purchased seven zero-emission electric buses and an electric charging station after successful application for a federal Clean Fuels grant and local matching funds from Metro Government. The buses will be part of the Music City Circuit, a free downtown service line that is designed to help residents and visitors reach points of interests, residences, and places of business in a quicker, more efficient, and environmentally friendly way. More information is available here.

Contact Us

Do you have an idea, event, or news items to share in an upcoming issue? Please contact Luke Gebhard, Senior Program Manager with TDEC’s OEP, at luke.gebhard@tn.gov or by calling 615-741-2994.

About the Office of Energy Programs

Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation’s Office of Energy Programs (OEP) is the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) designated State Energy Office for Tennessee. OEP, which joined the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) in January 2013, is tasked with developing and overseeing programs and initiatives that promote energy efficiency, renewable energy and energy management in the State. OEP creates and fosters programs that engage stakeholders in improving the environment and the economy through energy conservation, expanded use of viable renewable energy, alternative fuels and transportation, and support for the commercialization of technologies that encourage growth in the State’s clean energy sector.

About the Tennessee Energy Education Initiative

Launched in March 2013, TEEI’s mission is to provide in-depth training and educational tools to support the implementation of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy management projects in all sectors. Last year, through American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding provided by the U.S. Department of Energy, TEEI reached more than 2,800 stakeholders through 48 “tuition-paid” workshops and events across the State of Tennessee. TEEI partners also developed a program website, www.tnenergy.org, which features a searchable Online Resource Center with content from TEEI workshops.

April 2014 Online Newsletter

TDEC’s Office of Energy Programs (OEP) and its partners in the Tennessee Energy Education Initiative (TEEI) are excited to launch a monthly newsletter intended to provide news and information about energy-related events and resources.

Launched in March 2013, TEEI’s mission is to provide in-depth training and educational tools to support the implementation of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy management projects in all sectors. Last year, through American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funding provided by the U.S. Department of Energy, TEEI reached more than 2,800 stakeholders through 48 “tuition-paid” workshops and events across the State of Tennessee. TEEI partners also developed a program website, www.tnenergy.org, which features a searchable Online Resource Center with content from TEEI workshops.

This year and moving forward, OEP will continue working with its founding TEEI partners – Pathway Lending, the Industrial Energy Efficiency Network (IEEN), Tennessee Renewable Energy and Economic Development Council (TREEDC), Tennessee Technology University’s Industrial Assessment Center, and other statewide energy resource providers to support the execution of targeted education and outreach events. In addition, OEP will continue to use annual funding received under the U.S. Department of Energy’s State Energy Program to share energy information via the Online Resource Center and OEP website, host workshops and provide technical assistance.

Without further ado, here’s the latest news and events:

Upcoming TEEI Events

Environmental Show of the South

TDEC OEP Director Molly Cripps will moderate a panel presentation on “New Entrants in Electric Generation in the Tennessee Valley” at the 43rd Environmental Show of the South in Gatlinburg on April 30. The panel will be comprised of experts in energy law and federal regulations, and the session will be approved for continuing legal education credits.

Other Upcoming Events

The Energy and Environmental Building Alliance (EEBA) is coming to Nashville’s LP Field on May 20 to host a “Houses That Work” workshop. This U.S. Department of Energy-supported training is designed for builders, contractors, and all other building professionals and offers continuing education credits for National Association of Home Builders, American Institute of Architects, American Institute of Building Design, Building Performance Institute, US Green Building Council, and other certifications. The session will be presented by Justin Wilson of Construction Instruction, a leading building science consultancy firm. Additional information, including a registration link, is available here.

 

Recent TEEI Events

OEP speaks at 2014 Natural Gas Expo

OEP Senior Program Manager Luke Gebhard joined members of the America Public Gas Association, the Tennessee Gas Association, commercial fleet managers, and other stakeholders at the 2014 Tennessee Natural Gas Expo on March 19 at Legislative Plaza. The one-day event featured speakers from government and industry that focused on natural gas vehicles and technologies and on-site demonstration of natural gas vehicle applications across economic sectors, from passenger vehicles to waste haulers. Luke provided remarks about the economic and environmental benefits of alternative fuel vehicles, such as those that operate on natural gas.

For more information, visit the Tennessee Gas Association at: http://www.tngas.org/Default.aspx.

Tennessee Environmental Conference

Last month, TDEC OEP and TEEI organized and presented an energy session called “Untapped Opportunities for Commercial and Industrial Energy Efficiency in Tennessee” as part of the Tennessee Environmental Conference, which took place in Kingsport on March 25 and 26. The session kicked off with a discussion between TEEI partners Rick Marsh of the Industrial Energy Efficiency Network and Dr. Ken Currie of Tennessee Tech University regarding energy management strategies in large commercial and industrial facilities. This informative dialogue was followed up with a discussion of financing options that are available to Tennessee businesses and industries. TDEC OEP Director Molly Cripps moderated a panel that consisted of Amy Bunton of Pathway Lending, Stewart Shunk of Ameresco and Frank Rapley of TVA’s Energy Right Solutions program. Financing options that were presented to the audience included Pathway Lending’s Energy Efficiency Loan Program, energy savings performance contracting, and utility incentives for businesses that invest in energy efficiency improvements for their facilities.

Recent News and Reports

Study: Energy Efficiency is Least-Cost Energy Resource for Utilities

A new report by the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) finds energy efficiency to be the “least-cost energy resource option that provides the best value for America’s energy dollar.” ACEEE, a non-profit energy efficiency research and advocacy organization, conducted a four-year cost analysis of utility energy efficiency programs, from 2009-2012, and concluded that energy efficiency as a resource costs utilities as much as 2 to 3 times less than traditional power sources – at a cost of just 2.8 cents per kilowatt hour in some cases.

The study also found natural gas energy efficiency programs to be effective, at 35 cents per therm compared to 49 cents per therm in 2013, and highlighted the return on investment through energy efficiency programs. The report examined energy efficiency program costs from diverse states across the country, including: Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Nevada, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Texas, Utah, Vermont, and Wisconsin.

To read the full report, visit http://aceee.org/node/3078?id=5189.

Environmental Protection Agency Honors Ducktown, Tennessee with 2014 Clean Air Excellence Award

 

TEEI congratulates Ducktown Mayor James Talley for earning an EPA 2014 Clean Air Excellence Award in the “Community Action” category for the City’s 28-kilowatt solar array. The awards program, established in 2000 at the recommendation of the Clean Air Act Advisory Committee, recognizes and honors both individuals and organizations that have undertaken the risks of innovation, served as pioneers in their fields, advanced public understanding of air pollution and improved air quality. Ducktown utilized funding under the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant (EECBG) to install the array. The funding was administered through OEP under the Recovery Act.

 

Environmental Protection Agency Honors 4 Tennessee Organizations with 2014 Energy Star Awards

 

TEEI congratulates Eastman Chemical Company, Habitat for Humanity of Greater Nashville, and Nissan North America for being named Partners in Excellence for being named EPA’s Partners of the Year in Sustained Excellence for continuing “to exhibit exceptional leadership year after year in the Energy Star program while remaining dedicated to environmental protection through superior energy efficiency, “ and to the Tennessee Valley Authority for its Excellence Award, which recognizes “specific activities to promote energy-efficient products, homes, or buildings.”

 

These 4 Tennessee organizations were chosen from a pool of approximately 16,000 Energy Star partners across the country, including manufacturers, retailers, public schools, hospitals, real estate companies, and home builders, for their dedication to protecting the environment through greater energy efficiency. EPA issued a total of 127 awards nationwide.

 

Do you have an idea, event, or news items to share in an upcoming issue? Please contact Luke Gebhard, Senior Program Manager with TDEC’s OEP, at luke.gebhard@tn.gov or by calling 615-741-2994.

Manufacturers Invited to Share Building-Related Product Energy Performance Data

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory’s (NREL) Building Technologies Office invites manufacturers of select building-related products to share relevant energy performance data using the Technology Performance Exchange™. A collaboration between the U.S. Department of Energy Building Technologies Office and Federal Energy Management Program, as well as the Bonneville Power Administration, the Technology Performance Exchange is a Web-based portal that acts as a bridge to help energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies overcome the challenges between early innovation investment and profitable mass adoption, increasing adoption rates for promising technologies. The Exchange allows technology manufacturers, evaluators, utilities, consumers, modelers, and researchers to share building-related product energy performance data, and can help utilities, government organizations, and private sector companies reduce the time and cost necessary to evaluate a given technology.

The Technology Performance Exchange accepts data for the following 17 distinct technology categories. Manufacturers of products in these categories are invited to submit product performance data through the user interface or in an automated manner using the site application programming interface.

  • Ductless Heat Pumps: Indoor Units
  • Ductless Heat Pumps: Outdoor Units
  • Gas-Fired Unit Heaters
  • Heat Pump Water Heaters
  • Hot-Water Boilers
  • Inverters
  • Lamp Ballasts
  • Low-Voltage, Dry Type Distribution Transformers
  • Non-SSL Lamps
  • Non-SSL Luminaires
  • Rooftop Units
  • Photovoltaic Modules
  • Positive Displacement Refrigeration Compressors
  • Rotodynamic Pumps
  • SSL Luminaires
  • SSL Replacement Lamps
  • Steam Boilers

For more information, visit the Technology Performance Exchange.

Housing Assistance Council Memphis Workshop: March 25-26

Make plans to join the Housing Assistance Council in Memphis on March 25-26, 2014 for a workshop entitled, “Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Systems for Affordable Housing Development.” This course will outline energy efficient development practices and renewable energy technologies in rural affordable housing development. Participants will learn how to successfully deliver sustainable rural housing projects that meet both Energy Star® and WaterSense® requirements and develop strategies for incorporating renewable energy systems. In addition, participants will gain a better understanding of the infrastructure, economics, and financing of energy efficient renewable energy projects.

The course will also address multiple energy efficiency requirements and include site visits to the West Tennessee Solar Farm and to a rural development, and review case studies on Energy Star development, rural household solar heating, sustainable building technologies and renewable energy.

Register now: https://www.regonline.com/builder/site/Default.aspx?EventID=1457338

For additional information: www.ruralhome.org

 

Presented by: The Housing Assistance Council

Sponsored by: The US Department of Agriculture Rural Development

 

New CO2 Tracker Shows How Appliance Standards are Saving Money and Energy

Saving money and reducing carbon emissions are becoming easier to measure. Following President Obama’s State of the Union address urging action on climate change, including the goal of reducing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 3 billion metric tons by 2030, the Appliance Standard Awareness Project (ASAP) has launched a new CO2 ‘tracker’ on the ASAP website to monitor progress. As the CO2 tracker shows, thanks to new and upcoming appliance, equipment, and lighting efficiency standards, the nation is more than halfway to its goal. The Department of Energy (DOE) completed new standards for virtually every major household appliance within the past few years as well as for many commercial products, improving energy efficiency and saving consumers and businesses money.

To date, updated standards are projected to save 3.8 trillion kilowatt hours and 1.1 trillion cubic feet of natural gas by 2030. The kilowatt hour savings are equal to the total amount of U.S. electricity consumption in 2012; the gas savings would heat 4 out of every 10 U.S. gas-heated homes for an entire year. The result is a total net savings of $370 billion, with some of the biggest savings coming from improved standards for electric motors, which account for about half the electricity used by industry; household furnace fans, which can use as much energy as a refrigerator and dishwasher combined; and walk-in coolers and freezers. Most of the remaining standards expected in 2014 will cover commercial equipment and lighting. DOE is currently developing additional standards that could save about 700 million of the remaining 1.2 billion tons needed to meet the goal. To close the final 500 million ton gap, DOE will likely consider new product categories as well as update existing standards with good savings potential.

For more information on appliance standards, and how they are saving energy and money, please visit http://www.appliance-standards.org/sites/default/files/Progress_toward_3_billion_CO2_reduction.pdf.

 

National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) publications focus on unlocking the potential for alternative fuel vehicles and scalable energy efficiency.

The National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) ended 2013 on a high note with the December 20 release of two publications that focus on unlocking the potential for alternative fuel vehicles and scalable energy efficiency and renewable energy in the buildings and industrial sectors.

In the first report, titled “Alternative Fuel Vehicle and Fueling Infrastructure Deployment Barriers and the Potential Role of Private Sector Financial Solutions” NASEO teamed up with the Center for Climate and Energy Solutions (C2ES) to look at the role of private financing in overcoming market barriers to alternative fuel vehicles, such as electric, natural gas and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and their fueling infrastructure. This 32-page report examines market conditions, addresses barriers to demand for adoption of alternative fuel vehicles, and concludes with a review of how innovative financing practices can be applied to the alternative fuel vehicle market. The Director of TDEC’s Office of Energy Programs, Molly Cripps, provided input for the report.

The report is available here.

In the second report, titled “Unlocking Demand: An Analysis of State Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Financing Programs in the Building and Industrial Sectors,” NASEO completes an analysis of state-level energy financing programs that focus on the buildings and the industrial sectors. This 60-page report identifies and evaluates strategies that State Energy Office and their partners have undertaken to achieve scale in energy efficiency and renewable energy projects in buildings and industry. The Tennessee Energy Efficiency Loan Program, which is operated and managed by Pathway Lending and funded by the State of Tennessee, TVA, and Pinnacle Bank, is highlighted in the report.

The report is available here.

Tennessee Business Survey: Opportunities for Energy Efficiency In Business & Industry

In conjunction with the Tennessee Energy Education Initiative, Shelton Group conducted a comprehensive survey of Tennessee businesses in selected industries to better understand the participation propensities for energy efficiency and renewable energy initiatives and to determine key motivators and drivers within market segments. The survey also sought to validate the best targets, content/messaging, and channels for program participation as determined from the market overview.

This study included a survey of 13 key industries within Tennessee. Overall, we found that eight out of ten organizations consider energy consumption important to daily business purchase choices and activities.

Click through the following presentation for more information from the survey:

 

2013 ACEEE State Scorecard – TN Ranked 31st – Up 1 from 2012

WASHINGTON, D.C., (November 6, 2013): Energy efficiency measures are thriving in state capitals around the United States, with several states—including Mississippi, Connecticut, Illinois, and West Virginia—taking major steps that moved them up the ranks in the seventh annual edition of the State Energy Efficiency Scorecard released by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE).

With the Tennessee Energy Education Initiative, among others State-led programs, Tennessee increased its ranking by one over the 2012 ACEEE Scorecard. The complete 2013 ACEEE scorecard is available online at http://aceee.org/state-policy/scorecard. Information for Tennessee can be found here: TN 2013 ACEEE Scorecard.

Environmental Finance Center Network (EFCN) Workshop “Energy Management for Small Water Systems”

The Environmental Finance Center Network (EFCN), a national organization creating innovative financing solutions to environmental protection and improvement, has organized an “Energy Management for Small Water Systems” workshop in collaboration with EPA and TDEC that will focus on energy management planning of systems that typically serve fewer than 10,000 customers. Knoxville Utilities Board is hosting the event at its West Knoxville office on December 4, 2013.

The one-day workshop, which will start at 8:30AM EST, is designed to provide key decision makers with information on identification of regional partnership opportunities, energy audits, benchmarking, project planning, calculating payback, and identifying potential sources of project funding. It is ideal for local government and finance officials, board members, system operators who are looking to reduce the costs of operating their water systems through energy management and energy efficiency.

Registration is provided free, although participants will be responsible for travel and meals.

For more information and to register, please visit http://efcnetwork.org/knoxville-tn-energy-management-workshop/.

Takeaways from this Year’s Energy Efficiency as a Resource Conference

On September 22-24, ACEEE brought our 7th National Conference on Energy Efficiency as a Resource to the South for the first time, in Nashville, Tennessee. The timing proved fortuitous in view of the activities in Southern states such as Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. We established an all-time record attendance of nearly 450 people, with many first-time attendees at our conference coming from the region. ACEEE was pleased to be able to showcase examples of strong progress in the South, as well as examples across the nation of utilities making the most of energy efficiency as a system resource.

We encourage you to browse the conference presentations to get access to a treasure trove of information on the latest developments and achievements in the area of energy efficiency as a resource. Today we have also released a new white paper highlighting some of lessons learned from the conference…

To continue reading the blog post visit: http://aceee.org/blog/2013/10/energy-efficiency-growing-faster-kudz

To read the report visit: http://aceee.org/white-paper/eer-2013