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Energy and Global Climate Change in New England

August 2013 Volume 58
Community Energy Challenge (CEC) Monthly Update

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Welcome to the Community Energy Challenge Monthly Update, a monthly publication by EPA New England promoting energy efficiency and clean, renewable energy.

Disclaimer: Some of the events, articles and websites listed in this email are not sponsored by EPA. EPA is listing them for your information only. EPA is not responsible for the content of information from non-EPA sources, and does not endorse any commercial product, service, enterprise, or policy that may be included.

This page provides links to non-EPA web sites that provide additional information related to Energy. You will leave the EPA.gov domain and enter another page with more information. EPA cannot attest to the accuracy of information on that non-EPA page. Providing links to a non-EPA Web site is not an endorsement of the other site or the information it contains by EPA or any of its employees. Also, be aware that the privacy protection provided on the EPA.gov domain (see Privacy and Security Notice) may not be available at the external link. Click icon for EPA disclaimer.

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ANNOUNCEMENTS

  1. The President's Climate Action Plan
  2. Portfolio Manager has been re-launched – technical assistance available to benchmark again or for the first time
  3. U.S. Federal Agencies Develop Sea Level Rise Planning Tool
  4. Registration Now Open for Rockefeller Foundation 100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge

ARTICLES

  1. Connecticut Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority Establishes Solar Leasing Public-Private Partnership
  2. Massachusetts Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs Launches Community Wind Energy Initiative
  3. Camden Hills Regional High School in Maine Installs Wind Turbine, Saving $9,000 in First Year
  4. American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy Releases Energy Efficiency Indicators

EVENTS

  1. Ipswich, MA – Ipswich Wind Turbine Festival – August 3 (RSVP by August 1)
  2. Madison, ME – Energy Expo – August 3
  3. Willimantic, Waterbury and Old Lyme, CT – Connecticut DEEP's Energy Efficiency Workshops For K-12 Public and Private Schools – 3 Locations – August 7, 14 and 21
  4. Northampton, MA – Northampton Community Energy Forum 101 – August 21

FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

  1. Efficiency Vermont – Extra $500 Incentive for Completed Vermont Weatherization Work – deadline August 31
  2. Efficiency Vermont – Incentives for Air Source Heat Pumps – for GMP customers in former CVPS territory – until funds run out
  3. CT Clean Energy Fund – Micro-Grants to Support Clean Energy Awareness – until funds run out
  4. Massachusetts Clean Energy Center – Commonwealth Wind Development Grants – deadline May 15, 2014 or until funds run out
  5. Corporation for National and Community Service's Senior Corps: RSVP – letter of intent due August 9, final application September 10
  6. FTA Bus Efficiency Enhancements Research and Demonstrations – deadline September 20

TOOLS/TRAINING

  1. ENERGY STAR webinars (free but registration required)
  2. American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy Releases Report on Miscellaneous Energy Loads in Buildings

ANNOUNCEMENTS

  1. The President's Climate Action Plan
    President Obama has announced his Climate Action Plan, and a series of executive actions to reduce carbon pollution, prepare the U.S. for the impacts of climate change, and lead international efforts to address global climate change.

    Access the plan (PDF) (21 pp, 311 K).

    Access the fact sheet.

    For more information on climate change, visit EPA's climate change site.
  2. Portfolio Manager has been re-launched – technical assistance available to benchmark again or for the first time
    Connect with the EPA Region 1 Energy Team

    EPA has released a complete upgrade for this popular tool, including a new interface, streamlined functionality, and improved usability. If you previously used Portfolio Manager, all of your data will be transferred to the new system.

    Most importantly, now is a great time to take a fresh look at your Portfolio Manager account. Do you need help benchmarking for the first time or need a brush up on using it? Region 1's Energy Team wants to help communities in New England get familiar with the new tool and re-focus on benchmarking and energy planning. Let us know if you would like this assistance – we are on the road in New England this summer.

    Contact Cyndi Veit (veit.cynthia@epa.gov or 617-918-1666), or Linda Darveau (darveau.linda@epa.gov or 617-918-1718).
  3. U.S. Federal Agencies Develop Sea Level Rise Planning Tool
    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, in partnership with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, developed a sea level rise planning tool designed to help communities, residents, and other stakeholders consider risks from future sea level rise in planning for reconstruction following Hurricane Sandy.

    The tool includes interactive sea level rise maps and a sea level rise calculator.

    The tool is available.
  4. Registration Now Open for Rockefeller Foundation 100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge – deadline September 23
    To enable 100 cities to better address major 21st century challenges , the Rockefeller Foundation invites cities from around the world to apply for the 100 Resilient Cities Centennial Challenge.

    Municipal government leaders or major institutions can register to apply on behalf of their city. Registration is required by September 23, 2013 in order to receive the application.

    Winning cities will be announced in three rounds over the next three years, with the final round of winners named in 2015.

    Each winning city will receive:
    1. Membership in the 100 Resilient Cities Network which will provide support to member cities and share new knowledge and resilience best practices.
    2. Support to hire a Chief Resilience Officer to oversee the development of a resilience strategy for the city and be part of a learning network of other CROs.
    3. Support to create a resilience plan, along with tools and resources for implementation.
    As natural and man-made shocks and stresses grow in frequency, impact and scale, with the ability to ripple across systems and geographies, cities are largely unprepared to respond to, withstand, and bounce back from disasters.

    With more than 75 percent of people expected to live in cities by 2050, public and private sector leaders are expressing an increasing desire to build greater resilience, yet many have neither the technical expertise nor the financial resources to create and execute resilience strategies on a city-wide scale, in a way that addresses the need of the poor or vulnerable people.

    For more information, and to register »

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ARTICLES

  1. Connecticut Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority Establishes Solar Leasing Public-Private Partnership
    The Connecticut Clean Energy Finance and Investment Authority announced the creation of a public-private solar power leasing option for households and businesses as part of the State's Energize Connecticut Initiative. Building upon the initial Connecticut Solar Lease product, the Connecticut Solar Lease II leverages $9.5 million of ratepayer funds to attract $50 million of private capital. The program is expected to support approximately 1,500 residential solar PV systems, 400 residential solar thermal systems, and 40 commercial solar systems over a two-year period. Collectively, the program should result in the deployment of nearly 14MW of solar PV and 4,600MMBtu of solar hot water systems.
  2. Massachusetts Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs Launches Community Wind Energy Initiative
    The Massachusetts Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs announced the launch of the Community Wind Outreach Initiative. The inter-agency initiative is designed to enhance the state's capacity to provide support and guidance to municipalities, developers, and stakeholders for land-based wind projects. Massachusetts has experienced one of the fastest wind energy growth rates in the nation.
  3. Camden Hills Regional High School in Maine Installs Wind Turbine, Saving $9,000 in First Year
    Camden Hills Regional High School in Rockport, Maine installed a wind turbine at the school in 2012. The project was the result of efforts by the "Windplanners," a group of students at the school who researched about the design and installation of wind turbines, raised funds for the project, wrote grant applications, and conducted public outreach about the project. Since the turbine was installed in March 2012, it has generated 77,000 kilowatt hours of electricity and saved the school about $9,000 in energy costs. The Windplanners have also made other energy efficiency improvements around the school, saving $27,000 in 2012 alone.
  4. American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy Releases Energy Efficiency Indicators
    The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy released the first annual assessment of 15 indicators designed to track national progress on energy efficiency. The indicators reflect actions by states as well as national policies and performance. The analysis show that the United States is becoming more energy efficient, with progress in terms of savings from state energy efficiency programs and appliance standards, the fuel economy of new passenger vehicles, and reduced energy intensity in residential buildings.

    The paper, "Energy Efficiency: Is the United States Improving?," is available.

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EVENTS

  1. Ipswich, MA – Ipswich Wind Turbine Festival – August 3 (RSVP by August 1)
    12:00 pm – 1:30pm
    Ipswich Wind Turbine, Town Farm Road, Ipswich, MA

    Join Mass Energy Consumers Alliance in Ipswich to learn more about this project and to see this brand new turbine up close. This turbine is the second built in Ipswich, completed in December 2012.

    Lunch will be offered, with an up-close look at and inside the 2 MW wind turbine, with information provided on how the project is benefiting the community of Ipswich.

    Please RSVP by Thursday, August 1st for this FREE event.

    Contact Vineeta (vineeta@massenergy.org or 617-524-3950 x142)

    RSVP, or for more information »
  2. Madison, ME – Energy Expo – August 3
    9:00 am – 3:00 pm
    Madison High School, 486 Main St. Madison, Maine

    Admission is free and there will be drawings for energy related prizes.
    Businesses in the energy industry—both local and from all over Maine—will be at the Expo to talk

    There will be informational sessions on geothermal energy (with a tour of the geothermal heating at the Madison High school), natural gas availability in Central Maine, energy audits, small wind power projects, solar options, programs that help you finance energy updates, new lighting options, Net Energy Billing, weatherizing your house, biomass options, calculating your carbon footprint, hybrid and electric cars, heat exchangers, demand hot water systems, and many other options.

    If you're interested in finding a job in this growing field, there will also be information on educational programs at Kennebec Valley Community College.

    For more information, please contact:
    Representative Ann Dorney (anndorney@gmail.com or (207) 561-0415)
    Ben Doty (benjamin_doty@yahoo.com or (207) 612-6822)
  3. Willimantic, Waterbury and Old Lyme, CT – Connecticut DEEP's Energy Efficiency Workshops For K-12 Public and Private Schools – 3 Locations – August 7, 14 and 21
    August 7, 2013       Eastern Connecticut State University, Willimantic
    August 14, 2013     The School of Energy Efficiency, Waterbury
    August 21, 2013     DEEP Marine District Headquarters, Old Lyme

    Energy efficiency workshops are being offered in CT as part of the Air Permit Amnesty Program for public and private K-12 schools outreach and assistance initiative. The objectives of the Air Permit Amnesty Program are to ensure full compliance with all federal and state air permitting requirements, while assisting schools in achieving cost savings through energy efficiency.

    One of the objectives of the Air Permit Amnesty Program is to work with Connecticut schools to identify and implement energy efficiency practices. DEEP workshops will provide information on Connecticut's Energy Savings Performance Contracting Program, Energy Efficiency Programs and Funding, Connecticut's Green LEAF Schools Program, Operations and Maintenance Practices to Improve Energy Efficiency and EPA's Energy Star Portfolio Manager. The workshops are intended to help schools identify energy efficiency opportunities as well as provide information on programs available to help finance and implement those energy efficiency measures. CT DEEP encourages everyone to take part in these workshops regardless of participation status in the Air Permit Amnesty Program.

    The workshops are open to both school and town officials and may be attended by multiple representatives from the school/district.

    Register here (scroll to Workshops) or by calling (860) 424-3702.

    Review the agenda (PDF) (1 pg, 170 K)

    All workshops have the same content, except August 14, which has a tour included.
  4. Northampton, MA – Northampton Community Energy Forum 101 – August 21
    7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
    Northampton Senior Center, 67 Conz Street, Northampton, MA

    Northampton invites community members to participate in the Northampton Community Energy 101 Forum held on August 21st, 2013. Hosted in the auditorium at Northampton Senior Center, the event marks the kick-off of the Northampton Community Energy Strategies Program. The Forum provides participants the opportunity to engage one another – as well as state and community leaders – in structured conversation that will inform the development of Northampton's comprehensive Clean Energy Roadmap.

    Northampton invites community members to participate in the Northampton Community Energy 101 Forum held on August 21st, 2013. Hosted in the auditorium at Northampton Senior Center, the event marks the kick-off of the Northampton Community Energy Strategies Program. The Forum provides participants the opportunity to engage one another – as well as state and community leaders – in structured conversation that will inform the development of Northampton's comprehensive Clean Energy Roadmap.

    Register for this free event.

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FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

  1. Efficiency Vermont – Extra $500 Incentive for Completed Vermont Weatherization Work – deadline August 31
    Efficiency Vermont announced that all Home Performance with ENERGY STAR jobs completed with reports submitted by August 31, 2013 will receive an additional $500 incentive – that is on top of the $100 discount on all energy audits done this year and the $2,000 incentive for improvements made to your home offered by Efficiency Vermont.

    Find out more about the Home Performance program, including links to participating contractors and a list of incentives.
  2. Efficiency Vermont – Incentives for Air Source Heat Pumps – for GMP customers in former CVPS territory – until funds run out
    Available exclusively for GMP residential and business customers who are located in the former CVPS service territory, Efficiency Vermont has a new program offering up to $750 to help homeowners buy an energy-efficient Air Source Heat Pump, which heat and cool homes at a fraction of the cost of conventional heating systems, operating in down to sub-zero temperatures.
  3. CT Clean Energy Fund – Micro-Grants to Support Clean Energy Awareness – until funds run out
    Citizens with an interest in supporting clean energy can apply for community funding under the Community Innovation Grants Program (CIGP). The funding is awarded to cities and towns and is managed by a local energy task force (council or commission.) In turn, through a grant-giving process, the energy task forces provide micro grants between $250 and $2000 to organizations and citizens motivated to start local projects that support clean energy awareness and education within their communities. It is requested that any pamphlets or materials created through this funding be reviewed by the CCEF prior to distribution.

    For more information and to apply »
  4. Massachusetts Clean Energy Center – Commonwealth Wind Development Grants – deadline May 15, 2014 or until funds run out
    The Massachusetts Clean Energy Center is pleased to invite applications for grants to support the development of community wind and commercial wind projects.

    Community wind projects may use development grants for both development activities (such as permitting, environmental impact evaluation, geotechnical studies, public outreach, interconnection studies, etc.) and for construction activities (such as turbine procurement, erection and commissioning). Commercial wind projects may only use development grants for development activities.

    This solicitation describes the general scope, grant levels, application process and payment process. Applications may be submitted at any time and will be accepted for evaluation on a first-come, first-served basis.

    As the program evolves over time, this solicitation may be updated or withdrawn without notice. MassCEC expects applications will be accepted through May 15, 2014.

    Please contact commwind@masscec.com with any questions.

    For more information and to apply »
  5. Corporation for National and Community Service's Senior Corps: RSVP – letter of intent due August 9, final application September 10
    Letter of Intent to Apply: August 9, 2013
    Application Due: September 10, 2013

    Eligible Entities: Public agencies (including state and local agencies and other units of government), Indian Tribes, non-profit organizations, institutions of higher education, and government-recognized veteran service organizations

    The Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) RSVP Program one of the largest senior volunteer programs in the nation and offers a diverse range of volunteer activities that serve communities to create measurable impact, benefit volunteers through the service experience, and create community capacity. RSVP will focus grant making for fiscal year 2014 in six focus areas including environmental stewardship, economic opportunity, and disaster services.

    For example, grant activities may support increased citizen behavioral change leading to increased efficiency, renewable energy use, and ecosystem improvements.

    In this competition, CNCS intends to fund RSVP projects that support volunteers 55 years and older serving in a diverse range of activities that meet specific local and community needs. A letter of intent to apply is not required, but highly encouraged.

    For more information, visit the grant opportunity synopsis.
  6. FTA Bus Efficiency Enhancements Research and Demonstrations – deadline September 20
    Application Due: September 20, 2013
    Eligible Entities: State and local governmental entities; providers of public transportation; Departments, agencies, and instrumentalities of the Government; private or non-profit organizations; institutions of higher education; and technical and community colleges.

    The FTA seeks to promote the development and demonstration of targeted energy efficiency-enhancing technologies, specifically enhanced Electrification of Accessories and improvements in Thermal Management of Bus Bodies, for buses utilized in public transportation. Teams must include key roles by individuals representing both (1) a public transportation agency and (2) a bus manufacturer or supplier of relevant systems or components.

    For more information, visit the funding opportunity webpage.

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TOOLS/TRAINING

  1. ENERGY STAR webinars (free but registration required)
    August 7, 1:00 pm     Get Ready for Launch: EPA's 2013 National Building Competition
    August 8, 1:00 pm     Portfolio Manager "Office Hours"
  2. American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy Releases Report on Miscellaneous Energy Loads in Buildings
    The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy released a report that defines and characterizes the energy use of electric and gas miscellaneous loads associated with commercial and residential buildings, and suggests initial strategies for improving the efficiency of energy use. The report finds that devices and equipment commonly found in U.S. homes and businesses, such as televisions, computers, and ceiling fans, use 7.8 quadrillion Btus each year.

    The report, “Miscellaneous Energy Loads in Buildings,” is available.

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