Monday, February 16, 2009

Stimulus Bill - First Look - State Energy Grants.

There's alot to digest for Alt-Energy in this Stimulus Package. I looked it up and did some searching around. There are an incredible number of references, and I'm no Lawyer. I've decided that I'll take it a section at a time, and pull together references and resources as I find them. Skipping to the very end, leads me to the first section that I'm going to look at, or, SEC. 7006. ADDITIONAL STATE ENERGY GRANTS. At first look, I think I'd describe this as saying that if the State assures that they will move on setting the standards described in (1),(2), and (3), then they are eligible for direct grants by the Department of Energy for Renewable and Conservation Projects.

My interpretation of (1),(2), and (3) runs along the lines of "Decouple" the Utilities as has been done in California, Set Building Codes and other Standards, and prioritize Renewables and Conservation projects.

Sounds good to me!

My plan is to work on a letter to write to my State Congresspeople and Governor, to request that they begin this process of setting standards, and prepare to take full advantage of these Funds. In particular, I'd like to motivate people in the Southern States to start this process. These states are too often ignored, and yet they have excellent Solar Potential. Many are also Coal States, and so will require extra efforts to move towards Solar.


SEC. 7006. ADDITIONAL STATE ENERGY GRANTS


This section refers back to the earlier content of the Bill described as "paragraph (6) under the heading ‘‘Department of Energy—Energy Programs—Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’’ in title V of division A of this Act."


Here's the referred-to section.

(6) $3,400,000,000 shall be for the State Energy Program authorized under part D of title III of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act ((42 U.S.C. 6321).


Here's the referred-from section.

SEC. 7006. ADDITIONAL STATE ENERGY GRANTS.

(a) IN GENERAL.—Amounts appropriated in paragraph (6) under the heading ‘‘Department of Energy—Energy Programs—Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’’ in title V of division A of this Act shall be available to the Secretary of Energy for making additional grants under part D of title III of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (
42 U.S.C. 6321 et seq.). The Secretary shall make grants under this section in excess of the base allocation established for a State under regulations issued pursuant to the authorization provided in section 365(f) of such Act only if the governor of the recipient State notifies the Secretary of Energy that the governor will seek, to the extent of his or her authority, to ensure that each of the following will occur:

(1) The applicable State regulatory authority will implement the following regulatory policies for each electric and gas utility with respect to which the State regulatory authority has ratemaking authority:

(A) Policies that ensure that a utility’s recovery of prudent fixed costs of service is timely and independent of its retail sales, without in the process shifting prudent costs from variable to fixed charges. This cost shifting constraint shall not apply to rate designs adopted prior to the date of enactment of this Act.
(B) Cost recovery for prudent investments by utilities in energy efficiency.
(C) An earnings opportunity for utilities associated with cost-effective energy efficiency savings.

(2) The State, or the applicable units of local government that have authority to adopt building codes, will implement the following:

(A) A building energy code (or codes) for residential buildings that meets or exceeds the most recently published International Energy Conservation Code, or achieves equivalent or greater energy savings.
(B) A building energy code (or codes) for commercial buildings throughout the State that meets or exceeds the ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007, or achieves equivalent or greater energy savings.
(C) A plan for the jurisdiction achieving compliance with the building energy code or codes described in subparagraphs (A) and (B) within 8 years of the date of enactment of this Act in at least 90 percent of new and renovated residential and commercial building space. Such plan shall include active training and enforcement programs and measurement of the rate of compliance each year.

(3) The State will to the extent practicable prioritize the grants toward funding energy efficiency and renewable energy programs, including—

(A) the expansion of existing energy efficiency programs approved by the State or the appropriate regulatory authority, including energy efficiency retrofits of buildings and industrial facilities, that are funded—
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(i) by the State; or
(ii) through rates under the oversight of the applicable regulatory authority, to the extent applicable;

(B) the expansion of existing programs, approved by the State or the appropriate regulatory authority, to support renewable energy projects and deployment activities, including programs operated by entities which have the authority and capability to manage and distribute grants, loans, performance incentives, and other forms of financial assistance; and
(C) cooperation and joint activities between States to advance more efficient and effective use of this funding to support the priorities described in this paragraph.

(b) STATE MATCH.—The State cost share requirement under the item relating to ‘‘DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY; energy conservation’’ in title II of the Department of the Interior and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1985 (42 U.S.C. 6323a; 98 Stat. 1861) shall not apply to assistance provided under this section.
(c) EQUIPMENT AND MATERIALS FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY MEASURES.—No limitation on the percentage of funding that may be used for the purchase and installation of equipment and materials for energy efficiency measures under grants provided under part D of title III of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (42 U.S.C. 6321 et seq.) shall apply to assistance provided under this section.

SEC. 7007. INAPPLICABILITY OF LIMITATION.

The limitations in section 399A(f)(2), (3), and (4) of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (42 U.S.C. 6371h-1(f)(2), (3), and (4)) shall not apply to grants funded with appropriations provided by this Act, except that such grant funds shall be available for not more than an amount equal to 80 percent of the costs of the project for which the grant is provided.



Followed by RENEWABLE ELECTRICITY TRANSMISSION STUDY.



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1 comment:

Actve said...

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and encourage your readers to use the Energy Environment Forum and get a link back !
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