State & Stakeholder Newsletter, February 25, 2009

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Volume #8, Issue #4

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.

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: Solar America City/Orlando: The Sunshine State, The Solar State

–Current and Best Practices: The Geniuses at DSIRE Translate the Energy Parts of the Stimulus Package

–irecusa.org Extra: February 26, 2009 IREC Call Seminar: Recession and the Solar Market

–Grants/RFPs

–FYI

–Events

About this Newsletter/How to Subscribe


State/Local News

(1) COLORADO – Solar Rebate Program Funding Suffers from Budget Cuts

In effort to reduce the state deficit, Colorado government officials reduced the budget for the Governor’s Energy Office Solar Rebate Program by $1 million. As a result, the “orphan” solar water heater program was dropped from this funding round; the total number of program partners was reduced from 32 to 30; and the matching grant amounts were lowered (see DSIRE record).

(2) DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA – PSC Adopts Revised DG Interconnection Rules

The District of Columbia Public Service Commission (PSC) has adopted revised interconnection that include a four-tiered level of review system for distributed generation systems up to 10 megawatts in capacity. Notably, Tier 1 systems (certified, inverter-based systems up to 10 kilowatts) are not required to include an external disconnect switch, and liability insurance is not required for systems up to one megawatt (see DSIRE record).

(3) NEW YORK – PSC Approves Revised Net Metering Tariffs

The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) has approved revised utility tariffs that incorporate changes associated with S.B. 7171, S.B. 8415, and S.B. 8481, all enacted in August 2008. The most notable change made by these laws was the extension of net metering to non-residential systems up to 2 MW. (The time period for filing revised wind-energy system tariffs differs from that of the other changes. Utilities are required to due so by April 1, 2009.) (see DSIRE record).

(4) OHIO: Seminars Offer Tools and Resources for Ohio Companies

In fall 2008, the Ohio Department of Development and Ohio Air Quality Development Authority (OAQDA) sponsored ten seminars to provide information on technical resources, grants and incentives to help Ohio companies to retool manufacturing capacities and retrain work forces to produce components for the advanced energy industries.

(5) OREGON: Energy Trust Doubles Cap on Residential PV Rebate

The Oregon Energy Trust’s Solar Electric Buy-Down Program rebate caps increased from $10,000 to $20,000 for residential installations. This rebate is available to customers of Pacific Power and PGE who install new photovoltaic (PV) systems on new or existing homes, commercial and community buildings, farms and municipal facilities. Incentive amounts for commercial, industrial, non-profit and government customers remain unchanged (see DSIRE record).

(6) UTAH – PSC Raises Aggregate Net Metering Capacity Limit to 20%

The Utah Public Service Commission (PSC) has improved net metering opportunities for customers of Rocky Mountain Power, the state’s only investor-owned utility. Significantly, any customer net excess generation will be credited to customer’s next bill at the full retail (i.e., as a kilowatt-hour credit), and the limit on the aggregate capacity of all net-metered metered systems was raised from 0.1% to 20% of the utility’s 2007 peak demand (see DSIRE record).


Interview of the Week: Solar America City: Orlando–The Sunshine State, The Solar State

Florida: white beaches, bone fishing, icy beverages with little umbrellas, Disneyworld, the Sunshine State. Or the Solar State. MORE


Current and Best Practices: The Geniuses at DSIRE Translate the Energy Parts of the Stimulus Package

Those brainiacs at DSIRE did it again. They deciphered, dissected, and interpreted the policies and incentives contained in the voluminous federal stimulus bill, and shared these details (in record time) with ordinary folks like you and me. It’s just all in a day’s work. DSIRE’s Brian Lips tells us how they did it. MORE


irecusa.org Extra Extra!: February 26, 2009 IREC Call Seminar: Recession and the Solar Market

The next IREC Telephone Seminar on Thursday, February 26 at 2pm EDT (1pm CDT, noon MDT, 11am PDT, 10am Alaska, 8am Hawaii), will explore the future of solar markets during the current economic downturn. Industry experts Travis Bradford and Mark Crowdis will offer insight into the effect of the credit crunch on financing opportunities for renewables, outline the status of federal tax credits, and highlight the role of federal and state governments in keeping the renewable sector afloat. Please join us for this timely and informative discussion. MORE


Grants/RFPs

(7) We Energies Rolls Out New R&D Program

We Energies offers grants under its Renewable Energy Research and Development (R&D) Grant Program to its business and not-for-profit electric customers as well as organizations teamed with We Energies business and not-for-profit electric customers. Grants, up to a maximum of $200,000 per project, are offered to conduct research on renewable energy technologies, or to help demonstrate a renewable energy project or technology.

(8) Middle School Sustainability Challenge

The Siemens Foundation invites middle school students to participate in the We Can Change the World Challenge. Through this national sustainability education initiative, students are challenged to create sustainable, reproducible environmental improvements in their local communities. Awards include, but are not limited to, Savings Bonds, TV appearances, cameras, and travel. Responses due 3/15/09. For more info, click here.

(9) 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.

(10) 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 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 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 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.

FYI

(11) Call for Presentations & Posters Now Open for New Ideas in Educating a Workforce In Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency: 3rd National Conference Set for November 18-20, 2009, Albany, NY

There are three ways you can participate in the 2009 Workforce Education National Conference – you can submit a proposal for a Presentation, a proposal for a Poster, or become a Sponsor. Presentations will be grouped into 90-minute sessions organized around a common topic. Posters will be on display starting with the Reception on the first night of the conference and will continue to be shown throughout the second day of the conference. Sponsorships are available giving your company or organization visibility before and during the conference. Go toConference Home for information and details.

(12) DOE Issues NOTA for Solar America Showcases

The Department of Energy (DOE) has published a Notice of Opportunity for Technical Assistance (NOTA) for the Solar America Showcases project. The funding amount for Solar America Showcases is up to $500,000 of technical assistance per award. The current quarter’s application deadline is March 31, 2009.

(13) Austin Community College Going for ISPQ Accreditation; Local NJATC Trains its Electrical Contractors on Solar

Though still state incentive-free in Texas, the demand for renewable energy training remains strong. Since 2004, Austin Community College (ACC) has offered NABCEP’s Entry Level Certificate of Knowledge program to sold-out audiences.

(14) New LBL Report Shows Historical Reductions in the Installed Costs of PV in the U.S.

Tracking the Sun: The Installed Cost of Photovoltaics in the U.S. from 1998-2007, a new study on the installed costs of solar photovoltaic (PV) power systems in the U.S. shows that the average cost of these systems declined significantly from 1998 to 2007, but remained relatively flat during the last two years of this period.

(15) IREC Wants to Know You; Update Your Profile

Without a doubt, these are busy times. Subscribers to IREC’s State & Stakeholder Newsletter continues to rise, and to help us better inform you of the most up-to-date information, take a moment and update your profile. Your privacy is inportant to us. We will never share, sell, or rent individual personal information with anyone for their promotional use without your advance permission or unless ordered by a court of law. You can update your profile easily. Scroll down to the bottom of the newsletter, and click on the ‘update profile/email address’ option. Thanks so much.

(16) 7th Annual Solar Schoolhouse Summer Institute–Register On Line

Registration for the 7th annual Solar Schoolhouse Summer Institute for Educators is now online. Teachers from all over the country will attend this 5-day seminar – building model solar cars, cookers, homes, fountains, and more.


EVENTS Calendar

For a full listing of events, click the calendar icon on the IREC home page.


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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