Tag Archives: resiliency

Department of Defense Invests in Making Energy Savings and Increasing Resilience

June 20, 2018 | Jennifer Schafer-Soderman, Executive Director, Federal Performance Contracting Coalition |

The Senate’s recent passage of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 included important energy resiliency measures that support the Department of Defense (DOD)’s increased use of Energy Savings Performance Contracts (ESPCs) and Utility Energy Service Contracts (UESCs) to modernize and upgrade U.S. military facilities.

The specification to use these energy efficiency and energy financing tools will not only enable the DOD to meet its energy resilience requirements but will also allow it to address its infrastructure maintenance backlog. The use of these financing tools leverages private sector investment to meet our country’s defense goals.

 | ESPCs have achieved over $20 billion in guaranteed energy savings across the federal government.

In an Energy Savings Performance Contract (ESPC) or Utility Energy Savings Contract (UESC), the private sector works with the government customer to develop a project, but then the private company implements that project, measures and verifies savings every year, and guarantees that the savings will accrue. The private sector is repaid out of these guaranteed utility bill savings allowing for no added expenditures by the federal government.

About the Federal Performance Contracting Coalition (FPCC)

The FPCC is a group of 14 Energy Service Companies (ESCOs) advocating for increased federal use of Energy Savings Performance Contracts by the federal government. The FPCC activities focus primarily on barrier removal and ensuring "more, faster, bigger and better" ESPC projects in the federal ESPC marketplace. The FPCC is the primary organization representing ESPC industry and our members represent over 90% of federal ESPCs. The Business Council for Sustainable Energy is the administrator of the FPCC. For more information, please visit: http://federalperformancecontracting.com.

A Door Opener to the Governor’s Office: Resilience

May 30, 2018 | By: Laura Tierney, Business Council for Sustainable Energy | 

The Business Council for Sustainable Energy is hosting a series of meetings with energy thought leaders on resilience and reliability, to help the coalition understand the diversity of definitions, approaches and opportunities around these two concepts that are critical to the power sector and policy-makers alike. The BCSE Clean Energy Blog will share our coalition’s reflections on some of the ideas that emerge from these discussions, and the first of these conversations was held with Sue Gander, Director and Dan Lauf, Energy Program Director at the National Governors Association (NGA)'s Center for Best Practices Environment, Energy and Transportation Division.

Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards opens NGA's 2017 Summer Meeting plenary session, Preparing for the Extreme: Building Resilient Communities, with remarks on how governors can collectively advocate for increased support to states for their flood response and preparation plans.

Wyoming Governor Matt Mead speaks to the session’s guests, Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Brock Long and 100 Resilient Cities President Michael Berkowitz, during the 2017 NGA Summer Meeting in Providence, Rhode Island.

Resilience – The ability to withstand disasters better, respond and recover more quickly

and excel under new conditions

The take-away advice for clean energy companies that can improve a state government’s response time to a natural disaster or electricity black-out?  Approach a Governor’s office with both concrete policy actions and ideas around technology solutions that can enhance resilience, for the best impact.

Governors increasingly care about resilience. Why? There are a broad array of risks and threats that each state’s Governor’s office plan for – that include but are not limited to a range of natural disasters such as flooding, hurricanes, earthquakes, mudslides, tsunamis and wildfires, and risks specific to the power sector – electricity outages, broad blackouts and cybersecurity threats to the grid.

For a state to provide “energy assurance” to its residents, an important planning step is broad intra-government coordination among various state agencies and external coordination with utilities and other private sector players.  A goal of this planning is to create a reliable energy system that can “keep the lights on” in an emergency.

Some interesting facts that emerged from the discussion:

  • Each state has different vulnerabilities and capacity needs, and NGA is beta-testing a State Resilience Assessment & Planning Tool (SRAP) to help states conduct a self-assessment, and it includes an energy and infrastructure focus.
  • State planning includes personnel preparedness, facility hardening, mitigation options and the role of advanced metering infrastructure (AMIs) and distributed energy resources (DERs) such as storage, solar and microgrids.
  • Improving the resilience of emergency operation centers is an important step – and clean energy technologies such as combined heat and power (CHP) or solar can play a role to help “harden” these centers.
  • Some states, such as Colorado and Oregon, have a “Resilience Officer” that sits in the Governor’s office.
  • A resilient state strategy includes looking at how states get “smarter.” This includes the integration of information communication technologies (ICT) and the internet of things (IoT) to planning and how this can improve the quality of life, mobility, safety, resiliency, economic viability and sustainability of residents and businesses. The emphasis is on outcomes.


This post is the first in a series on resilience and reliability. 

Clean Energy Businesses Applaud Action on FAA Pre- and Post-Disaster Resiliency Measures (April 30, 2018)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

April 30, 2018
Contact: Laura Tierney
Email:  [email protected]
Office: 202.785.0507

Clean Energy Businesses Applaud Action on FAA Pre- and Post-Disaster Resiliency Measures

Washington, DC – Business Council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE) President, Lisa Jacobson, made the following statement about emergency preparedness and response provisions of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization bill passed by the House of Representatives:

“The Council was pleased to see provisions included in the FAA Reauthorization bill that will advance electric grids, power supplies and building stock that are reliable, more resilient, agile, cost effective, cyber-secure, and environmentally sound.”

“The legislation included two key pieces of legislation – the Disaster Recovery Reform Act, and the PREPARE Act – which will ensure that the United States does two things: better prepares for disasters and extreme weather events and rebuilds more resiliently for when disaster does strike.”

The Disaster Recovery and Reform Act, introduced by Congressman Barletta (PA), would provide pre-disaster mitigation grants and authority for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to assist communities with rebuilding after disasters with more robust design and construction standards. The PREPARE Act, introduced by Congressman Cartwright (PA) would establishes a Council of relevant agencies to increase government effectiveness in emergency management. Under the PREPARE Act, these designated agencies would both develop their own disaster contingency plans and coordinate together on regional emergency management

“The PREPARE Act is a useful tool to combat coordination failure, perhaps the most critical concern in the emergency management sector,” Jacobson continued. “The Council applauds Congressman Cartwright and Congressman Barletta, and other co-sponsors, for their efforts to include these important pieces of legislation in the FAA reauthorization bill.

“Renewable energy, energy efficiency and natural gas deliver jobs, increased economic growth, greater energy productivity and fewer emissions for the United States.  Improvements to the nation’s aging energy infrastructure and our built environment – which would use more of these clean energy technologies and services – along with better building codes, will create resilient and sustainable communities.

“As the legislation now moves to the Senate, the Council will continue to work toward even stronger resilience provisions.” Jacobson said.

BCSE Response to FERC Decision on Grid Resiliency Pricing Proposal (January 8, 2018)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 8, 2018

Contact: Laura Tierney
Email:  [email protected]
Office: 202.785.0507

BCSE Response to FERC Decision on Grid Resiliency Pricing Proposal

Washington, DC – In response to the order released today by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in response to the grid resiliency pricing proposal, Business Council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE) President Lisa Jacobson made the following statement.

“The Council appreciates the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) review of the grid resiliency pricing proposal and looks forward to working with FERC, the Department of Energy and grid operators on FERC’s new proceeding to evaluate grid reliability and resiliency needs.

“Resiliency and reliability issues are paramount to the electric sector.  The portfolio of currently available clean energy technologies and services in the energy efficiency, natural gas and renewable energy sectors – working with energy storage, demand response and micro-grids, among other technologies and services – is meeting the needs of the grid affordably and reliably today and can meet the needs of an evolving electric grid into the future.

“The members of the Business Council for Sustainable Energy offer their expertise to this new FERC effort.”

Download the full press release.

BCSE Urges FERC to Decline DOE Grid Resiliency Pricing Proposal (October 23, 2017)

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

October 23, 2017

Contact: Laura Tierney
Email:  [email protected]
Office: 202.785.0507

BCSE Urges FERC to Decline DOE Grid Resiliency Pricing Proposal

Washington, DC – In comments submitted today to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), the Business Council for Sustainable Energy (BCSE) urged the Commission to decline the proposal by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) on electricity grid reliability and resiliency pricing.  Council President Lisa Jacobson made the following statement regarding the submission.

“Resiliency and reliability issues are paramount to the electric sector.  However, the DOE proposal fails to identify an immediate problem or substantial evidence for greater “resiliency” provided by resources with a 90-day on-site fuel supply.

“The portfolio of currently available clean energy technologies and services in the energy efficiency, natural gas and renewable energy sectors – working with energy storage, demand response and micro-grids, among other technologies and services – is meeting the needs of the grid affordably and reliably today and can meet the needs of an evolving electric grid into the future.  The DOE proposal could jeopardize this approach.

“Additionally, the DOE proposal does not provide adequate time or detail for interested parties to comment, especially given the magnitude of the policy action recommended.  To the extent the Commission has concerns regarding the impact of plant retirements on grid reliability and resiliency, it can gather more information regarding resiliency and what, if any, reforms might be needed to address it within the organized markets.  FERC should decline this proposal and pursue other processes to consider resiliency and reliability issues.”

Please see a copy of the BCSE submission here.

Download the press release.