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Energy and Global Climate Change in New England

February 2011 Volume 28
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.

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ANNOUNCEMENTS

  1. Patrick-Murray Administration Announces A Clean Energy and Climate Plan to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions 25 percent by 2020 (Massachusetts)
  2. International Young Eco-Hero Awards – deadline February 28

ARTICLES

  1. Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives: Changes in Store for 2011
  2. Maine Land Use Regulation Commission Approves Wind Turbines
  3. U.S. EPA Issues Final Federal Permit to Cape Wind
  4. Incentives to go solar in N.H. – Utilities official explains business benefits
  5. Burlington, VT moves to using LED streetlights

EVENTS

  1. Portland, ME – Solar For the Homeowner – February 5
  2. Providence, RI – Ocean State Clean Cities Meeting – February 9
  3. Burlington, VT – Better Buildings by Design – February 9 and 10
  4. Washington DC - 2011 Great Energy Efficiency Day – February 16
  5. Boston, MA – NESEA Building Energy 2011 Conference and Trade Show – March 8-10

FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

  1. New Hampshire – Low-income Weatherization – Request for Applications: Solar Installers – deadline February 4
  2. U.S. EPA SmartWay Program Funding Assistance – deadline February 10
  3. New England Grassroots Environment Fund Small Grants Program – deadline February 15
  4. We Can Change the World Challenge – deadline March 15, 2011
  5. Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) – deadline March 22
  6. Efficiency Vermont Home Performance with ENERGY STAR – no deadline but funds limited
  7. New Hampshire Utilities incentives – no deadline but funds limited

TOOLS/TRAINING

  1. ENERGY STAR free webinars
  2. BOC 2011 Technical Webinar Series - Lighting Solutions for IEQ and Energy Performance – February 9 - free
  3. Energy Conservation Measures for Wastewater Treatment Plants – webinar – February 16

ANNOUNCEMENTS

  1. Patrick-Murray Administration Announces A Clean Energy and Climate Plan to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions 25 percent by 2020 (Massachusetts)
    The Global Warming Solutions Act of 2008 requires the Secretary of Energy and Environmental Affairs to establish a statewide limit on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of between 10 percent and 25 percent below 1990 levels for 2020 — on the way toward an 80 percent reduction in emissions by 2050 — along with a plan to achieve the 2020 target. Secretary Ian A. Bowles has set that 2020 limit at 25 percent — and this Clean Energy and Climate Plan for 2020 contains the measures necessary to meet the limit.

    View full report »

  2. International Young Eco-Hero Awards – deadline February 28, 2011
    Action For Nature invites applications for the International Young Eco-Hero Awards, to recognize the individual accomplishments of young people, ages 8 to 16, for their outstanding accomplishments in environmental advocacy, environmental health, research, or protection of the natural world. Winners will receive public recognition, cash prizes, and certificates for their outstanding efforts to help protect and preserve the environment. Responses due 2/28/11.

    For more information »

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ARTICLES

  1. Energy Efficiency Tax Incentives: Changes in Store for 2011
    Last month, President Obama signed into law a tax package that contains modifications and extensions to energy efficiency tax incentives for homeowners, home builders, and appliance manufacturers. Information on all of these energy efficiency tax incentives are accessible on the Tax Incentives Assistance Project (TIAP) Web site so that consumers and businesses can take full advantage of changed federal tax credits for energy-saving technologies and practices.

    Read full article »

  2. Maine Land Use Regulation Commission Approves Wind Turbines
    On January 5, 2011, the Maine Land Use Regulation Commission approved the addition of 11 wind turbines to an industrial wind site on western Maine's Kibby Mountain. During the commission's yearlong deliberations on the project, the project has undergone several changes including: removing the four southernmost turbines from what was then a 15-turbine project, increasing the turbines in size from 1.5 megawatts to 3 megawatts, placing the turbines in a smaller area, eliminating a road to the turbines, and relocating sensitive vegetation. The Commission also approved the reclassification of nearly 700 acres of Washington County timberland as a fast-track zone for wind-site development.

    Read full article »

  3. U.S. EPA Issues Final Federal Permit to Cape Wind
    On January 7, 2011, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final permit to the Cape Wind project for construction. The EPA permit completes the Federal permitting process for the 468 megawatt offshore wind farm. With the permitting process complete, and with the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities recent approval of Cape Wind's power purchase contract with National Grid, Cape Wind's focus turns to securing project financing. Cape Wind is the first fully permitted U.S. offshore wind farm and it has also secured the nation's first offshore wind lease.

    Read full article »

  4. Incentives to go solar in N.H. – utilities official explains business benefits
    Kate Epsen, an analyst for the New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission, recently conducted an interview with Business Monday in which she discussed solar incentives for businesses in NH, including current incentives and funding opportunities for businesses wanting to go solar.

    Read full article »

  5. Burlington, VT moves to using LED streetlights
    Vermont's largest municipal electric utility is installing LED - that's light-emitting diode - streetlights in a residential area for the first time, and saving 74% of the energy used by traditional streetlights.

    Read full article »

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EVENTS

  1. Portland, ME – Solar For the Homeowner – February 5
    10-11am – 142 Presumpscot St, Portland


    Have you thought about solar hot water or solar electricity for your home but not known where to begin?

    Then come to Solar for the Homeowner, a free hour long presentation covering how solar hot water and solar electric energy systems work.

    You'll learn the answers to questions like: How much will a system cost? Is my home a good site for solar? How reliable are these systems? Can I really expect a return on investment since I live in Maine?

    Feel free to bring any other questions about solar in general or your situation specifically. We will discuss available incentives and you will have the chance to view working energy systems in our showroom.

    More Information »

  2. Providence, RI – Ocean State Clean Cities Meeting – February 9
    10 am to noon
    RI Department of Environmental Management
    235 Promenade Street, Providence, RI


    Frank Stevenson, Supervising Air Quality Specialist at Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management will be presenting information about Rhode Island's Anti-Idling Legislation and the benefits of anti-idling technologies.

    Ocean State Clean Cities Coalition will learn how to grow to its fullest potential and offer greater value to stakeholders. Meet our Coalition Mentors from Centralina Clean Fuels!

    Attendees will all be invited to introduce themselves to the group and provide an update of their petroleum reduction efforts.

    RSVP »

  3. Burlington, VT – Better Buildings by Design – February 9 and 10, 2011
    Sheraton Conference Center, 870 Williston Road, Burlington, VT

    Better Buildings by Design is the region's premier design and construction conference, featuring interactive learning about building durability, efficiency, and value for both residential and commercial projects. Learn from leaders in the design and construction fields about the latest techniques and technologies for superior building efficiency, performance, and value. Find out what works, what doesn't, and what you can put into practice immediately. Experience the latest energy-efficient products and services available for both the commercial and residential markets.

    More Information »

  4. Washington DC - 2011 Great Energy Efficiency Day – February 16

    Join the Alliance to Save Energy on February 16th in the Nation's Capital to discuss why energy efficiency is the most viable way for the 112th Congress to embrace a clean energy economy. Along with keynote addresses from members of Congress, there will be four panels focused on energy efficiency legislation opportunities for:

    Launched in 2004, Great Energy Efficiency Day has quickly become a "must attend" discussion on the need for, and benefits of, energy efficiency, drawing more than 400 stakeholders from business, industry, government, academia, the media and the public interest sector. The event features panel sessions with leading voices in energy efficiency and keynote addresses from congressional members.

    Free registration »

  5. Boston, MA – NESEA Building Energy 2011 Conference and Trade Show – March 8-10
    Seaport World Trade Center. For Renewable Energy and Green Building Professionals


    Boston, MA – NESEA Building Energy 2011 Conference and Trade Show – March 8-10 Seaport World Trade Center. For Renewable Energy and Green Building Professionals

    Sessions receive continuing education units from the following professional organizations: AIA, BOMI, BPI*, InterNACHI, NAHB and NARI

    For more information, including Conference Schedule and to register »

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FUNDING OPPORTUNITIES

  1. New Hampshire – Low-income Weatherization – Request for Applications: Solar Installers – deadline February 4
    The State of New Hampshire plans to install solar PV and hot water systems in qualifying low-income households throughout the state through March 31, 2012. The exact number of jobs has not been determined. Bid prices are to be honored until the program end date unless the contractor and CAP agencies successfully negotiate changes based upon prevailing market pricing conditions.

    For more information »

  2. U.S. EPA SmartWay Program Funding Assistance – deadline February 10
    EPA's SmartWay Program and National Clean Diesel Campaign are announcing the availability of funding assistance to create finance programs, such as low-cost leases or revolving loan programs, to achieve significant reductions in diesel emissions throughout the United States. The SmartWay Finance Program is soliciting proposals for projects that reduce diesel emissions through the creation of national, tribal, regional, state or local finance program(s). Finance programs include, but are not limited to, those that provide the loan recipient a specific financial incentive (i.e., longer terms or lower rates) to purchase or lease eligible retrofitted vehicles or equipment. The proposed finance program should maximize the total project funds available for financing eligible diesel emission reduction solutions and be sustainable to maintain the program.

    Eligible diesel emission reduction solutions include verified emission control technologies such as retrofit devices and engine upgrades; verified idle reduction technologies; certified engine repowers, and/or vehicle or equipment replacement.

    Eligible Entities: Regional, state, local, or tribal agencies or port authorities with jurisdiction over transportation or air quality, and certain non-profit organizations and institutions

    More information »

  3. New England Grassroots Environment Fund Small Grants Program – deadline February 15
    The New England Grassroots Environment Fund (NEGEF) small grants program is designed to foster local grassroots environmental initiatives in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont, in the places where we live, work and play. NEGEF provides small grants of up to $2,500 to fuel local activism that results in broader community involvement in projects that address a wide range of environmental issues and opportunities. The mission of NEGEF is to energize and nurture long-term civic engagement in local initiatives that create and maintain healthy, just, safe and environmentally sustainable communities.

    Applications are accepted anytime, with the following deadlines for each grant round: February 15 and September 15.

    Local groups may be tackling an environmental health problem related to poor air quality, water pollution, or climate change initiatives and energy efficiency, working to protect greenspace, starting a local community garden or may be urging citizen participation in wildlife habitat protection.

    For more information and copies of our brochure contact NEGEF at PO Box 1057, Montpelier, VT 05601, email info@grassrootsfund.org or visit the website at www.grassrootsfund.org

  4. We Can Change the World Challenge – deadline March 15, 2011
    The Siemens Foundation, Discovery Education, and the National Science Teachers Association, request proposals for the We Can Change the World Challenge, a program designed to educate, empower, and engage students and teachers across the U.S. to become "Agents of Change" in identifying and solving environmental problems.

    Awards vary by grade levels and include savings bonds and school grants. Applications are being accepted from August 31, 2010 through March 15, 2011

    For more information »

  5. Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) – deadline March 22
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requests proposals for the Community Action for a Renewed Environment (CARE) Program. CARE is community-based, community-driven, multimedia demonstration program designed to help communities understand and reduce risks due to toxic pollutants and environmental concerns from all sources. $2 million expected to be available, up to 9 awards anticipated.

    For more info, contact Dennis O'Connor at oconnor.dennis@epa.gov or go to: http://www.epa.gov/air/grants_funding.html
    Refer to Sol# EPA-OAR-IO-11-08.

  6. Efficiency Vermont Home Performance with ENERGY STAR – no deadline but funds limited

    Efficiency Vermont is offering up to $2,500 in incentives for Home Performance with ENERGY STAR (HPwES) assessments and improvements on single and multi family homes and small commercial and public buildings completed by certified BPI contractors, including heating system upgrades.

    For more information, contact Efficiency Vermont at (888) 921-5990 or visit this page.

  7. New Hampshire Utilities incentives – no deadline but funds limited
    The four major NH utilities – NHEC, National Grid, PSNH & Unitil – are offering up to $4,000 in incentives plus financing options for work completed by a Home Performance with ENERGY STAR contractor for qualifying homes. The utilities are also offering zero percent, on electric bill financing up to $7,500 to qualified customers that can be used within the NH HPwES program to pay for their 50% co-payment or for any cost effective work recommended by the auditor beyond the $4,000 rebate cap.

    NH support is limited to homes with higher than average fuel bills that include a primary or back up central heating system. Funding for this program is limited, so act soon.

    For more information, visit http://www.nhsaves.com/residential/homes.html or contact your electric utility company.

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TOOLS/TRAINING

  1. ENERGY STAR webinars (all times are EST; registration required but free)
    • Feb 3, 2pm, Benchmarking in Portfolio Manager for State and Local Governments
    • Feb 8, 12pm, Office Buildings: Rating Energy Performance with EPA's Portfolio Manager
    • Feb 8, 2pm, K-12 Benchmarking 101
    • Feb 9, 12pm, Multifamily Benchmarking with EPA's Portfolio Manager
    • Feb 9, 2pm, ENERGY STAR and Green Building Rating Systems
    • Feb 15, 1pm, Computer Power Management with ENERGY STAR
    • Feb 15, 2pm, Responding to the Climate Change Imperative: Setting Energy Use Targets with ENERGY STAR
    • Feb 16, 1pm, Portfolio Manager 101 for New England Congregations
    • Feb 16, 1pm, Purchasing and Procuring Efficient Equipment
    • Feb 22, 2pm, Financing Energy Efficient Upgrades with ENERGY STAR
    Register for all ENERGY STAR webinars »

  2. Building Operator Certification (BOC) 2011 Technical Webinar Series - Lighting Solutions for Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) and Energy Performance – February 9 - free
    Efficiency Maine and the Northwest Energy Efficiency Council invite you to attend the 2011 BOC Technical Webinar series "Lighting Solutions for IEQ and Energy Performance" at NO COST. This offer is valued at $200 per person.

    Efficiency Maine and the Northwest Energy Efficiency Council invite you to attend the 2011 BOC Technical Webinar series "Lighting Solutions for IEQ and Energy Performance" at NO COST. This offer is valued at $200 per person.

    More information

  3. Energy Conservation Measures for Wastewater Treatment Plants – webinar – February 16
    11am – 12pm


    EPA is happy to announce the first in a series of webinars on energy use at water and wastewater facilities. Reserve your spot at https://www2.gotomeeting.com/register/828737490

    This webinar will focus on energy efficiency measures at Wastewater treatment plants. The presentation will cover the newly released EPA manual "Energy Conservation Measures for Wastewater Treatment Plants." This manual reviews a variety of innovative and emerging technologies and offers a number of case studies in facilities across the country. Our presenters our Phil Zahreddine of EPA's Office of Wastewater Management in Washington, DC, and Stephen Couture of the Cadmus Group in Watertown, MA.

    Download the manual (PDF) (222 pp, 7.1 MB)

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