State & Stakeholder Newsletter, August 6, 2008

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Volume #7, Issue #16

Editor: Jane Pulaski


The IREC State & Stakeholder Newsletter tracks a range of market-oriented news, services and outreach tools valuable to the renewable energy community. This free newsletter is distributed semi-monthly to email subscribers and published on IREC’s website. If you have comments or if you would like to submit a news item, email Jane Pulaski. Both Word and PDF versions of this newsletter are included as attachments below.

If you want the best news about what’s going on in the states and cities, get IREC’s State & Stakeholder newsletter.

Thanks for reading.


In this Issue…

–State/Local Headlines (IREC States, SAI cities, Interconnection/Net Metering)

–Interview of the Week: Brian Hurd, Hands-On Solar Workshop

–Current and Best Practices: Behind the Net Metering/Interconnection Scene with Jason Keyes and Kevin Fox

–irecusa.org Extra: 2009 Workforce Education Conference Being Planned

–Grants/RFPs

–FYI

–Events

About this Newsletter/How to Subscribe


State/Local News

(1) CALIFORNIA – Solar Access Laws Amended

California has enacted legislation expanding the Solar Rights Act by disallowing apartment complexes, condominiums and planned developments from applying unreasonable restrictions to solar-energy systems. In addition, the Solar Shade Control Act was amended to provide clarification to avert future disputes between solar-energy system owners and adjacent property owners.

(2) DC – Grants for Renewable Energy Demonstration Projects Now Available

The District Department of the Environment (DDOE) Energy Division — formerly the D.C. Energy Office — has announced a fourth round of funding under the Renewable Energy Demonstration Project (REDP). The deadline for this funding round is August 15, 2008. A total of $150,000 is available.

(3) FLORIDA – Tallahassee Expands Net Metering Limit

The City of Tallahassee Utilities recently increased the limit on individual net-metered photovoltaic (PV) systems to 100 kilowatts (kW) in capacity. The previous limit was 10 kW.

(4)_INDIANA – State Grants Available for Renewables

The APE Grant Program supports commercial, public, and non-profit projects that offset fossil fuel use and support public education. Wind, solar, and biogas CHP projects located at municipal wastewater treatment facilities are eligible for grants under the current solicitation, which closes September 19, 2008.

(5) INDIANA – State Rebates Available for Residential Geothermal Heat Pumps

Residential, single-family homeowners in Indiana with total incomes of $100,000 or less are eligible for a flat rebate of $1,500 for the installation of a new geothermal heat pump system in place of an existing heating and cooling system.

(6) MICHIGAN – State Grants Available for Biomass Energy

Under a new solicitation, the Michigan Biomass Energy Program (MBEP) anticipates awarding multiple grants of up to $24,950 each to non-profit and public projects that contribute to the deployment of fully commercialized biomass energy technologies. Proposals are due by August 29, 2008.

(7)_ NEW JERSEY – PSE&G Initiates Solar Loan Program for Residential Customers

The PSE&G Solar Loan program offers residential customers loans covering 40-60% of PV system costs at a 6.5% interest rate over a 10-year term. Participants have the option of repaying the loan by using Solar Renewable Energy Certificates (SRECs) generated by their system.

(8) NEW YORK-Green Consumer Resource & Directory

Responding to an increase in inquiries for green expert services and goods, Renewable Energy Long Island (RELI) has published what it calls the region’s first annual LIGreenGuide.

(9) NEW YORK-KidWind Sponsors Five-Day Wind Masters Training for NYS Teachers

The KidWind Project, a team of teachers, engineers and scientists committed to promoting the elegance of wind power through affordable tools and training programs, sponsored Wind Masters Training from July 7-11, 2008 in Morrisville, NY, an intensive training for a diverse group of accomplished teachers from all over NYS. The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) funded the training.

(10) SOUTH DAKOTA – SD Schools Selected for Wind Energy Program

The South Dakota Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has selected eight schools in South Dakota to participate in the inaugural launch of the Wind for Schools program.

One school in each selected district will receive a 1.8 kW turbine and specific curricula, and each project will be supported by a partnering electric utility.

(11) TEXAS – Texas Teachers introduce ‘Solar for Schools’

San Marcos, TX CISD is participating in a state wide program developed by the Texas State Energy Conservation Office entitled “Solar for Schools.”

(12) RHODE ISLAND – New Law Expands Net Metering

H.B. 7809, enacted in July 2008, has significantly expanded the availability of net metering in Rhode Island. As a result, the maximum individual system limit is 3.5 megawatts (MW) for systems owned by cities, towns or the Narragansett Bay Commission; 2.25 MW for systems developed but not owned by cities and towns, sited on land owned by the city or town, and providing power solely to the city or town; and 1.65 MW for other customers.

(13) VERMONT – Utility Offers Bonus Payment for Net-Metering Customers

Green Mountain Power, an investor-owned utility, now offers a bonus payment to customers with net-metered photovoltaic (PV) systems. In addition to the benefits of net metering, Green Mountain Power customers with a PV system receive a payment of $0.06 per kilowatt-hour (kWh) of electricity generated by the system.

(14) WISCONSIN – Focus on Energy Presents Conference on Working Smarter with Renewable Wood Energy

On Sept. 4, Focus on Energy, Wisconsin’s energy efficiency and renewable energy initiative, will host a conference demonstrating how businesses and organizations can take advantage of Wisconsin’s most abundant natural resource – wood.


Interview of the Week: Brian Hurd, Hands-On Solar Workshop

Brian Hurd is a vocational instructor at the East Los Angeles Skills Center (ELASC), an employment preparation and training center serving a diverse community. Recognizing that the demand for photovoltaic installers was poised to explode, Hurd developed a course of study to prepare ELSAC students to enter the growing field. “The main reason we started our photovoltaic installer program,” said Hurd, “was to partner with solar contractors to provide a well-trained entry-level work- force to help meet this growing demand.”

Last month, Hurd’s “Hands On Solar, Inc.,” in collaboration with IREC, just offered a half day workshop on July 24, 2008 for schools in the Southern California area interested in starting programs in solar electricity. “This workshop included information on NABCEP’s PV Entry Level Certificate of Knowledge, and how schools can become provider institutions,” said Hurd.

I caught up with Brian just after this workshop to find out how it went. Here’s our conversation.


Current and Best Practices: Behind the Net Metering/Interconnection Scene with IREC’s Jason Keyes and Kevin Fox

If you live in a city or state that’s interested in having the best help with net metering and interconnection standards, look no further than IREC’s Jason Keyes and Kevin Fox. They’re working at a blistering pace to respond to requests for their exceptional assistance in this intricate process.

Founding Keyes & Fox LLP on July 1st of this year to serve the regulatory needs of IREC and other clients, Jason and Kevin intervene in state utility commission rulemakings related to net metering and interconnection of renewable energy systems on behalf of IREC. Prior to forming Keyes & Fox LLP, Jason and Kevin worked for Wilson Sensing Goodrich & Rosita where they focused on regulatory aspects of renewable energy project development and finance.

These guys make a highly complex topic really understandable, even for a recovering English major like me. They’re as good as it gets. Read our conversation.


irecusa.org Extra: 2009 Workforce Education Conference Being Planned

Plans are underway for the third national conference on New Ideas in Educating a Workforce in Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency. This event will be held in the fall of 2009 in Albany, New York. Pre-conference, technical workshops will be held followed by 2 days of conference sessions. Read more.


Grants/RFPs

(15) Notice of Opportunity for Technical Assistance “Solar America Showcases” Reopened

The “Solar America Showcases” program, designed to expedite large-scale installation projects that involve novel solar technologies or novel applications of solar technologies, and that have high visibility and replicability, provides technical assistance—not direct funding—via teams of DOE-funded solar experts from national laboratories. Access the Notice of Opportunity. Due date for applications is October 9, 2008.

(16) SMUD to release second 2008 Renewable Energy RFO

On August 28, 2008, the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD) will release a Request for Offers (RFO) of renewable energy for power purchase agreements (PPA) and/or ownership options. Proposals will be due in late October 2008. Interested parties can download the RFO documents from SMUD’s Electronic Bid Solicitation System (EBSS) Web site when it becomes available. Registration to the EBSS site is required to access the documents.

(17) PNM Announces Solicitation for All Renewable Sources

Public Service Company of New Mexico, PNM, announces a solicitation for all sources of renewable energy in New Mexico. PNM is seeking approximately 700 GWH/year of renewable energy from a variety of sources including wind, solar, biomass, geothermal, and biogas. Projects can be implemented between 2009 and 2011. Complete details are included in the Request for Proposals.

(18) Renewables RFPs

A number of new renewables RFPs are posted at DOE’s Green Power Network. Scroll down to sign up to receive RFP updates.

(19) NYSERDA Funding Opportunities

The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has several Program Opportunity Notices (PONs) on the street. To see full details on any of these solicitations, visit the NYSERDA website and scroll through the listings to find them:

  • PON 1050: Solar Electric Incentive Program provides cash incentives for the installation of new Solar Electric or Photovoltaic (PV) systems by Eligible Installers. For information, contact NYSERDA at 866.NYSERDA or by email.

    Expiration: 12/31/09

  • PON 1060, New York Energy Smart Loan Fundsm invites financial institutions to participate in and customers to apply for low interest financing for energy efficient improvements, new construction, and renewable technology projects. For information, contact NYSERDA at 866.NYSERDA or by email.

    Expiration: 7/31/09

  • PON 1098,Wind Incentives for Eligible Installers is a first-come, first-served Financial Incentives for small wind systems that offset customers’ electric usage (end-use). For information, contact NYSERDA at 866.NYSERDA or by email. Expires 12/31/09 or until funds are fully committed, whichever comes first.
  • PON 1176: Renewable, Clean Energy, and Energy Efficiency Product Manufacturing Incentive Program offers $10M to expand the level of manufacturing of renewable, clean, and energy-efficient products in New York State. Proposals will be accepted through June 30, 2011 by 5:00pm (ET) or until funds run out, whichever is first. Proposals will be evaluated on a first come, first served basis as they are received. Contact Jennifer Harvey at (518) 862-1090, ext. 3264 or jlh@nyserda.org.
  • PON 1200: Environmentally Preferred Power Systems & Energy Storage Technologies offers $12M for two rounds and four categories. Deadline for Round 1, proposals has expired; for Round 2, proposals are due January 14, 2009, 5 p.m. EST.

FYI

(20) Policy Analyst for DSIRE

The N.C. Solar Center at NCSU is searching for a policy analyst for projects associated with the Database of State Incentives for Renewables & Efficiency (DSIRE).

(21) IREC Offers NABCEP Solar Thermal Exam Prep Training Aug. 26-27

On Tuesday and Wednesday, August 26 – 27 from 6pm – 9pm EDT, IREC will present a two-day workshop to prepare individuals for the NABCEP Solar Thermal Certification Exam on September 13. This workshop is funded by the U.S. Department of Energy.

(22) DOE to Offer Webcast on Solar Photovoltaic Financing

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Technical Assistance Project (TAP) for state and local officials will sponsor “Solar Photovoltaic Financing: Deployment on Public Property by State and Local Governments,” a free webcast on Wednesday, August 13 that outlines financing options for state and local governments to install PV systems.

(23) NABCEP Revises PV Study Guide

NABCEP has revised its PV Study Guide in time for applicants taking the September 13 certifying exam to use. Bill Brooks and Jim Dunlop revised the Guide.

(24) Solar Electric Power Association Announces Top Ten Rankings; Results of 2007 U.S. Utility Solar Electricity Market Survey

Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) recently announced Top Ten rankings that reveal which utilities in the United States had the most solar electricity integrated into their energy mix as of the end of 2007. The rankings are based on information provided through a survey of utilities and independent research.

(25) The Solar Living Institute Offers Solar Training

The SLI is offering three days of professional solar training with instruction by industry leading manufacturers such as OutBack, SMA, Unirac, Enphase, Kaco, and renowned instructors such Andy Black, Bill Brooks and more. August 13-15 in Ukiah, CA. NABCEP credit hours are available for some trainings, see course descriptions for details.

(26) RELI, LIPA, LISEIA on Hand to Dedicate Solar Habitat for Humanity HouseHabitat for Humanity in Nassau County, the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA), Renewable Energy Long Island (RELI), and the Long Island Solar Energy Industries Association (LISEIA) hosted the installation of solar panels on the new Habitat home being constructed at 9 Wilson Place, Roosevelt on Sunday, August 3, 2008.

(27) CVPS Plans $500,000 for Renewable Energy Projects

Using money derived from the State’s Clean Energy Development Fund, Central Vermont Public Service is proposing to allocate $500,000 to a variety of renewable energy projects.

(28) West Coast Solar Education Tour Set To Launch

An interactive educational exhibit highlighting solar energy’s value and viability, sponsored by SunEdison, Evergreen Solar Inc., United Solar Ovonic LLC, SMA America Inc. and Xantrex Technology Inc., kicked off Augist 1st for a 100-day tour of 50 cities in Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Minnesota and Colorado.


EVENTS Calendar

(29) Aug 16-17 SolarFest, Hopland, CA
(30) Aug 16 NE Ohio Green Energy Expo, Akron, OH
(31) Aug 22-24 Southern Energy & Environment Expo, Fletcher, NC
(32) Sept 13 NABCEP PV and Solar Thermal Certification Exams
(33) Sept 13-14 Iowa Renewable Energy Expo, Cedar Falls, IA
(34) Sept 15-20 PV Design & Installation Workshop, East Chartleston, VT
(35) Sept 20-21 Rocky Mtn. Sustainable Living Fair, Ft. Collins, CO
(36) Sept 20-21 Solar Fiesta, Albuquerque, NM
(37) Sept 20-21 Pennsylvania RE & Sustainable Living Festival, Kempton, PA
(38) Sept 25-26 Plain Green ’08, Washington Pavillion, Sioux Falls, SD
(39) Sept 26-28 Renewable Energy Roundup and Green Living Fair, Fredericksburg, TX
(40) Oct 5-8 Geothermal Resources Council Annual Meeting, Reno, NV
(41) Oct 13 IREC Annual Meeting, San Diego, CA
(42) Oct 13-16 Solar Power International 2008, San Diego, CA
(43) Oct 15 NABCEP Board Meeting, San Diego, CA
(44) Oct 15 Renewable Energy Vermont 7th Annual Conference & Trade Show, Burlington, VT
(45) Nov 9-11 Texas Renewables, Austin, TX


About this Newsletter/How to Subscribe

The State & Stakeholder Newsletter is published electronically on a semi-monthly basis by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc.. To subscribe to this newsletter, click here and follow the instructions. There is no fee for subscriptions. If you have comments or news items, please send them to Jane Pulaski.

Disclaimer: The Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. (IREC) does not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information, apparatus, product or process that is referred to or linked to in this newsletter. Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise, does not necessarily constitute or imply IREC’s endorsement or recommendation.

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