Department of Interior invests $50 million in water conservation projects in drought-stricken West

Interior’s WaterSMART Program to Support 64 Projects in 12 States

As part of the Obama Administration’s continued effort to bring relief to western communities suffering from the historic drought, U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced on May 20 that Interior’s Bureau of Reclamation will invest nearly $50 million to improve water efficiency and conservation in California and 11 other western states.

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell (at podium) held a press conference at the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant and Japanese Garden in Van Nuys, California, to announce federal funding for water and energy conservation projects. (Left to right) L.A. Sanitation Director Enrique C. Zaldivar, P.E., Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Estevan López and LADWP Chief Sustainability and Economic Development Officer Nancy Sutley joined Secretary Jewell for the announcement. (Photo by US Bureau of Reclamation)

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell (at podium) held a press conference at the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant and Japanese Garden in Van Nuys, California, to announce federal funding for water and energy conservation projects. (Left to right) L.A. Sanitation Director Enrique C. Zaldivar, P.E., Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Estevan López and LADWP Chief Sustainability and Economic Development Officer Nancy Sutley joined Secretary Jewell for the announcement. (Photo by US Bureau of Reclamation)

Joined by officials from the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power Redirecting to a non-government site (LADWP) and the Bureau of Reclamation, Secretary Jewell made the funding announcement at the Donald C. Tillman Water Reclamation Plant in Van Nuys, California. The plant, which purifies millions of gallons of wastewater each day, was a fitting setting to launch federal-state partnerships dedicated to a more sustainable and resilient water future.

Through the WaterSMART Program, Reclamation is providing funding for water conservation improvements and water reuse projects across the West. More than $24 million in grants is being invested in 50 water and energy-efficiency projects in 12 western states. Seven water reclamation and reuse projects in California will receive more than $23 million and nearly $2 million will fund seven water reclamation and reuse feasibility studies in California and Texas.

WaterSMART is the Department of the Interior’s sustainable water initiative. Since it was established in 2010, the initiative has provided about $250 million in competitively-awarded funding to non-federal partners, including tribes, water districts, municipalities and universities. These investments have conserved enough water to meet the needs of more than 3.8 million people. Every acre-foot of conserved water delivered means that an equivalent amount of existing supplies is available for other uses.

WaterSMART water and energy-efficiency grants can be used for projects that conserve and use water more efficiently, increase the use of renewable energy, improve energy efficiency, benefit endangered and threatened species, facilitate water markets, carry out activities to address climate-related impacts on water or prevent any water-related crisis or conflict. The 50 projects announced in Los Angeles will be leveraged with at least 50 percent non-federal funding for a total of $133 million in improvements over the next two to three years. For a complete description of the 50 projects, visit the WaterSMART Water and Energy Efficiency grant website.

Source: US Department of Interior via Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, 5/20/15

Rural customers develop efficiency, renewable projects with REAP funds

The June 30 deadline is approaching for the final round of grants and guaranteed loan financing from the Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Energy for America Program (REAP).

REAP funding helps agricultural producers and rural small businesses purchase and install renewable energy systems or make energy efficiency improvements. Western customers are among the electric cooperatives, communities and businesses that have benefited from the program.

Making difference in Midwest
Agricultural communities in the Midwest face many economic challenges in spite of the region generally enjoying low-cost power. Since the program’s inception in 2002, REAP has contributed to the economic health of this part of the country by helping farmers and small businesses reduce operating expenses. Rural electric cooperatives have used REAP funding to diversify their resource portfolios.

Nobles Cooperative Electric Redirecting to a non-government site in Worthington, Minnesota, was an early REAP recipient. When the state legislature began considering a statewide renewable electricity standard, the co-op applied for a grant to install a utility-scale wind turbine in its territory. In addition to the $500,000 REAP grant, Nobels received $2.5 million through Clean Renewable Energy Bonds from the National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation Redirecting to a non-government site (CFC) to fund renewable energy projects. General Manager Richard Burud noted that the CFC and USDA assistance made the difference between doing the project and not doing the project.

Increasing irrigation efficiency
In the dry western farming region of all-public power Nebraska, growers rely on irrigation systems that use great quantities of both water and energy.  Many irrigation systems are powered by diesel engines, which have high carbon emissions and expose farmers to volatile fuel costs. Nebraska Public Power District, Redirecting to a non-government site one of the state’s largest electric providers , teamed up with USDA Rural Development staff in 2004 to help more than 200 farmers receive REAP (then called Section 9006) grants to replace diesel or propane-fueled irrigation motors with electric motors.

NPPD helped agricultural customers in western Nebraska apply for USDA REAP funds to convert their irrigation pumps from diesel motors to efficient electric motors. Electric pumping systems are also more compatible with remote management technology. (Photo by Nebraska USDA Rural Development Office)

NPPD helped agricultural customers in western Nebraska apply for USDA REAP funds to convert their irrigation pumps from diesel motors to efficient electric motors. Electric pumping systems are also more compatible with remote management technology. (Photo by Nebraska USDA Rural Development Office)

Close cooperation was critical to the program’s success. Rural Development did extensive outreach to growers, focusing on irrigation projects, while NPPD staff conducted the energy assessments needed to apply for the grants. “We continue to support REAP projects by doing energy audits for applicants,” explained NPPD Energy Efficiency Consultant Ron Rose. “Audits performed by a certified energy manager earn more points for the applicant in the USDA scoring process.”

The farmers did their part too, working through the application process to receive grants that averaged around $7,000 per system. “The grants don’t pay for the whole project, but they lower the payback period considerably,” acknowledged Rose.

Given the fuel prices at the time, farmers were able to save as much as 30 percent of their irrigation energy costs by converting from diesel to electric. Rose noted that even though fuel prices have dropped, the electric pumping systems are still popular because remote management technology works better with electric equipment. “The farmers are able to control irrigation from their smart phones or tablets,” he said.

Helping customers helps utility
The REAP project stabilized energy cost for the applicants, gave them greater control over their systems and has encouraged some growers to move to solar powered pumps. Investing in energy efficiency can increase the income for a farm or business, and buying and installing new equipment creates economic activity in the community.

An economically healthier community is always good for a public-power utility. More directly, moving some of its larger customers from fossil fuel to electric power adds to NPPD’s customer base. Other REAP projects, such as solar grain dryers and building envelope upgrades for small businesses, promise future benefits for peak load control while keeping the local economy strong.

Rose urges customers to contact their local USDA Rural Development offices Redirecting to a non-government site to get their applications as soon as possible. Power providers may help support applications by providing energy audits. Also, keep in mind that REAP is a grant rather than a rebate, advises Rose. “Complete the application before you start the project.”

Upcoming deadlines

Efficient clothes dryer topic of free webinar

June 10, 2015
1 p.m. MDT

Join the Washington State University Energy Program on Wednesday, June 10, at 1:00 p.m. Mountain Time, for the Emerging Technologies Showcase webinar, Heat Pump Clothes Dryers – Will Life Ever Be the Same Again? Redirecting to a non-government site 

Schematics of a heat pump clothes dryer: 1. drum; 2. filter; 3. warm, humid air; 4. evaporator; 5. condensate; 6. compressor; 7. expansion device; 8. condensor; 9. blower; 10. hot dry air. (Artwork by Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

Schematics of a heat pump clothes dryer: 1. drum; 2. filter; 3. warm, humid air; 4. evaporator; 5. condensate; 6. compressor; 7. expansion device; 8. condensor; 9. blower; 10. hot dry air. (Artwork by Oak Ridge National Laboratory)

Residential clothes dryers are not known for their efficiency—in the U.S., these appliances consume 4 percent of our annual electricity use. Worse yet, 20 to 25 percent of their heat disappears up the dryer vent. No wonder clothes dryers are not included in the federal government’s Energy Star program. However, recent advances in dryer technology may be poised to change all that.

This webinar explores basic design types of energy-saving clothes dryers and the technologies that make them more efficient than current models. Lab and field testing results will be discussed in depth, with special focus on the importance of testing dryers on actual wet laundry and in different settings. Utilities can learn about the energy savings, cost and near-term availability of the appliances, as well as ideas for providing consumer guidance and financial support to interested customers.

A question-and-answer session follows the presentation. All webinars are recorded and available from Energy Efficiency Emerging Technologies Redirecting to a non-government site (E3T) and Conduit Redirecting to a non-government site energy efficiency forum.

Register today for this free event, or contact E3T for more information.

Bonneville Power Administration sponsors this monthly webinar series with support from Western. Get latest information about promising energy-efficiency technologies and practices that BPA is considering for future research.

Source: Bonneville Power Administration, 5/14/15

Webinar explores new EIM’s effect on renewable integration

May 28, 2015
3-4:30 p.m. MDT

Join the Four Corners Wind Resource Center Redirecting to a non-government site (4CWRC) Thursday, May 28, for Recent Developments in Western Energy Markets, the EIM, and the Integration of Wind Energy. Redirecting to a non-government site 

This webinar will highlight the services and operations of the California Independent System Operator, the West’s only organized regional transmission market.  Participants will gain an understanding of the emerging Energy Imbalance Market Redirecting to a non-government site (EIM) and its governance, and how the EIM supports wind integration.

The emerging EIM offers Western utilities new market opportunities—and challenges—to integrate wind power and other renewables onto their systems. The industry expects the EIM to improve reliability and lower the cost of renewable energy integration.

Scheduled speakers include Don Fuller, a CAISO representative, who will provide an overview of services and operations of the independent system operator’s organized market. Fuller will contrast CAISO to how other balancing authorities operate in the Western Interconnection. The presentation will highlight the EIM service now being offered to utilities and BAs outside the CAISO footprint.

Rebecca Wagner, Nevada Public Utilities commissioner and chair of the EIM Transitional Committee will provide her perspective on expanding the EIM. Wagner’s presentation will also cover how the market governance will allow parties outside of California to have a formal role in the EIM development.

Register today to learn more about how the emerging EIM can benefit your utility. The webinar will take place from 3 to 4:30 p.m.

Afterward, the presentations will be posted on the 4CWRC website.  For questions or more information contact Meghan Dutton.

Learn more about the benefits of the West’s new EIM Redirecting to a non-government site in Utility Dive.

Source: Green Power News via Four Corners Wind Resource Center, 5/14/15

Greentech Media recognizes SMUD as grid innovator

Sacramento Municipal Utility District Redirecting to a non-government site(SMUD) was among the 20 companies to receive the Grid Edge 20 award Redirecting to a non-government site for contributions to the transformation of the U.S. electrical grid.

Sponsored by GreenTech Media Research, the award highlights energy-related businesses using new products, disruptive strategies and forward-looking vision to shift our traditional, centralized grid to a more distributed, responsive system. SMUD earned the award for implementing Space-Time Insight’s Redirecting to a non-government site (STI) geospatial and visual analytics software to improve the analysis and management of data from its smart grid devices.

Good-news-bad-news scenario
The project is part of SMUD’s SmartSacramento initiative to improve the reliability and efficiency of the grid and to give customers more control over their energy use. The first step was the installation of 630,000 new smart meters capable of two-way wireless communication, which allowed SMUD customers to see their daily and hourly energy use on the web. The meters also enabled the utility to remotely read use, and set the stage for smarter thermostats, home energy management systems, energy-efficient smart appliances and time-of-use (TOU) rates.

Customer reaction to the installation was overwhelmingly positive. “The business case for smart meters was based on operational efficiencies rather than energy savings, but the TOU rates can drive efficiency improvements,” explained Jim Parks, SMUD program manager for energy research and development. “In the pilot project, customers on TOU or CPP [critical peak pricing] rates, or both, were able to reduce their peak energy use by 6 to 25 percent during peak periods.”

SMUD also installed dozens of other intelligent grid-connected assets to provide data on the condition and performance of equipment to improve system reliability. All that data, however, came with a downside: figuring out how to incorporate it into grid decision-making. Traditional manual operation simply could not burrow through this mountain of data to realize the benefits. It was time to automate, and SMUD chose  STI’s geospatial and visual analytics technology.

Grid planning, beyond
The software platform visualizes and coordinates data from more than 30 different systems. A large “electronic wall map” in SMUD’s Distribution Operations Center displays the synthesized data as a common operational view of grid and asset health, weather, wind and fire conditions and power supply and demand, to name a few.

The electronic wall map in SMUD's operational center gives operations staff an overview of the grid right down to cameras like the one on the Meadowview-Mack  substation.

The electronic wall map in SMUD’s Distribution Operations Center gives operations staff an overview of the grid right down to cameras on grid assets like the Meadowview-Mack substation.

Managers and operators are now able to respond more quickly to outages, rapidly develop switching plans and make more informed decisions regarding equipment maintenance and investments. “This gives our operations staff the view they need of what’s happening on the grid, right down to zeroing in on cameras on substations or loading on individual feeders,” said Parks.

In addition to tying together many utility operations, the platform includes data links with state and federal firefighting agencies and water districts for coordinating emergency responses to fires and floods. It also pulls weather data from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the utility’s fifteen weather stations. Managers can turn data on temperature forecasts into predictions of coming peak power demand, or transform wind-speed readings into dynamic line ratings.

Now that situational intelligence technology has proven its value in grid operations, other SMUD departments are showing an interest. The utility has launched a second phase of the system to meet some of these demands. Geospatial and visual analytics could be valuable for neighborhood design and transformer loading, customer demographics for new programs, vegetation analysis or understanding the impact of electric vehicles on single circuits. “Some of the departments have found uses for it that we didn’t anticipate, while some of the planned uses were less effective than we expected,” Parks acknowledged.

Stakeholders select awardees
Grid Edge 20 recognizes vision and innovation in the energy services and utility industries. A network of energy industry stakeholders, including the team of analysts at GreenTech Media Research nominate and vote on the awardees. Final award recipients were selected with input from Greentech Media’s Grid Edge Executive Council. Since its launch in the fall of 2013, the council has grown to more than 75 member companies. Duke Energy, Embertec, Enphase Energy, Electric Power Research Institute, SunEdison and 3M are the newest members.

Many of the awardees will be attending or presenting at Grid Edge Live 2015, Redirecting to a non-government site June 23-25, in San Diego. The conference covers issues surrounding grid modernization and customer and business model transformation.

Source: GreenTech Media via Public Power Daily, 4/30/15

Nominations open for 3iAwards to recognize innovation, ingenuity, inspiration

The Interstate Renewable Energy Council Redirecting to a non-government site (IREC) is calling for nominees for the IREC 3iAwards. The prestigious annual award searches the nation for innovative people, projects and programs that promote and accelerate the sustainable growth of clean energy. The IREC 3iAwards honor innovation, ingenuity and inspiration from the nation’s best in both renewable energy and energy efficiency. 3iAwards

“Every year IREC recognizes those who have creatively developed new approaches to advancing clean energy, because changing the status quo requires determination, innovation and persistence,” said IREC Board Chair David Warner. “With these awards, we honor the people who inspire us with exemplary projects and programs that increase renewable energy use and promote energy efficiency. And we encourage others to build on their successes.”

For the second year, the selection of IREC’s award winners in several categories will be in the hands of the public, with open voting dates to be announced. The opportunity for a variety of stakeholders and the community at large to weigh in brings even greater awareness and acknowledgement of the applicants and awardees. All applications must be received online by June 26, 2015.

IREC recognizes that renewable energy and energy efficiency play equally crucial roles in achieving a sustainable future. Traditionally, government, energy industries and educational systems view them separately, with little collaboration between programs. However, IREC’s awards are inclusive, with a specific award category for “Closing the Divide.” This award highlights innovative examples of initiatives that help close the divide between energy efficiency and renewable energy. Other nomination categories are:

  • Community Renewables Project of the Year
  • State and Local Government Initiative of the Year
  • IREC Accredited Clean Energy Training Provider of the Year
  • IREC Certified Clean Energy Trainer of the Year

Applications from or on behalf of extraordinary people, projects and programs in the clean energy arena will be accepted online through June 26 in all five categories.

The 3iAwards are made possible by the generous support of IREC’s corporate sponsors. For more information about sponsorship opportunities, contact Larry Sherwood at 518-621-7379.

Source: Interstate Renewable Energy Council, 5/7/15 

Download the updated Cooling Tip Sheet, bill stuffer

Cooling season is once again upon us, and yours may already be shifting into high gear, so there is no time like the present to remind your consumers about the importance of maintaining their air conditioners.dog-fan

The 2015 Tip Sheet: Cooling System Maintenance, and its “Mini-me” bill stuffer are ready to be downloaded, imprinted with your logo and given to your customers before they call to complain about high summer cooling bills. Both handouts break down the simple steps that keep air conditioners humming efficiently, and offer operating tips to make sure a cooling system is not fighting an uphill battle.

The full-size sheet includes websites for those who might want to do a little more research on efficient cooling. That makes it a good handout for customer education events. The bill stuffer provides the same information, minus the online resources, in the perfect size to fit into a business envelope. Customers can post it on their refrigerators, near their cooling systems or in home workshops. You might also print up a batch of stuffers for cooling contractors and dealers to hand out to their customers.

We designed The Tip Sheet so you can set it up with your own logo, or send Energy Services an electronic version of your logo and we’ll create a template for you. Then you can print the quantity you need in-house, or take it to your local quick printer for more paper choices. Either way, The Tip Sheet and bill stuffer give you an easy, cost-effective way to talk to your customers about cooling efficiency, and to help you with summer load control.

Equipment Loan tools educate, inspire next generation

The Science, Engineering, Arts and Math Expo drew hundreds of attendees to Alexandria Area High School this spring. (Photo by ALP Utilities)

The Science, Engineering, Arts and Math Expo drew hundreds of attendees to Alexandria Area High School this spring. (Photo by ALP Utilities)

Educational kits available from Western’s Equipment Loan Program do not diagnose equipment failures or energy losses, yet they are among our most popular loan items.

Following in the footsteps of Gunnison County Electric Association and Southeast Electric Cooperative, ALP Utilities Redirecting to a non-government site in Alexandria, Minnesota, recently borrowed a demonstration kit to teach their future customers about the science behind electricity.

Show and tell
Western’s fuel cell kit and infrared camera made an appearance at the first STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) Expo hosted by Alexandria Area High School March 26. ALP and its power wholesaler Missouri River Energy Services Redirecting to a non-government site (MRES) helped sponsor the event with School District 206 and other community partners. The event featured hands-on demonstrations and learning exhibits by the sponsoring partners, as well as students’ projects in STEAM subjects.

ALPSTEAM-fuelcell

Students Nolan Christenson (left) and Nathan Eck explain how a fuel cell makes electricity to a visitor to the ALP Utilities booth at the STEAM Expo. ALP borrowed the fuel cell kit and an infrared camera from Western’s Equipment Loan Program. (Photo by ALP Utilities)

At the ALP exhibit, visitors could learn where power comes from and how it gets to their homes. Two students from the school’s science academy helped at the ALP booth and showed visitors how the fuel cell produced electricity. “They were so excited to learn about the equipment,” said ALP Energy Services Representative Vicki Gesell, who coordinated ALP’s participation.  “I was really impressed with their ability to explain how fuel cells work and answer visitors’ questions.”

A working solar panel from MRES was also on display, as well as linemen gear and a length of underground cable, with a ratchet cutter so students could cut off a souvenir.

A lighting display featuring light-emitting diode, or LED, lighting showed how smart electrical energy choices save electricity, money and limited resources. Students surveyed their surroundings through the infrared camera and learned how to find heat loss and detect potential equipment failures. Gesell noted that kids loved seeing infrared images of themselves, confirming that the powerful diagnostic tool can also be a secret weapon for public outreach.

Hundreds of students and parents attended the expo, making it a great place to meet and chat with customers. “An event like this gives us the chance to be a part of the community, to talk to our customers in person about their needs and to remind them about the programs ALP offers,” Gesell observed.

Lots to discover
ALP offers residential customers plenty of ways to control and reduce their energy use. Customers can receive rebates on eight different Energy Star appliances and all-electric water heaters with 92-percent or greater efficiency factor. After installing a qualified water heater, ALP adds a load controller free of charge to cycle the unit for short durations during peak load times. The utility also has an off-peak heating program.

Through the MRES Bright Energy Solutions (BES) program Redirecting to a non-government site, ALP provides rebates on high-efficiency electric furnaces, heat pumps, air conditioners and lighting. “Now that LED products are coming down in price, customers are interested in making the switch to these longer lasting bulbs,” noted Gesell.

BES has an extensive list of rebates for commercial customers, too. Incentives are available for heating and cooling systems, manufacturing equipment, commercial food handling appliances, efficient lighting for new and existing buildings and custom measures. Another service  BES offers is a New Construction Design Review to help customers build efficiency into their new facilities and get incentives to help pay for the measures.

Building efficient future
The site of the STEAM Expo illustrates the benefits of planning for energy efficiency with the help of your power provider. Completed in 2014, Alexandria Area High School is expected to save more than $76,000 in energy costs each year.

Last December, ALP and MRES presented school officials with a check for $121,849 through Bright Energy Solutions. The rebate covered insulation in the school’s roof and walls, windows and sunshades, efficient heating and cooling system and lighting. Also, the school district purchased several ENERGY STAR appliances for the cafeteria, culinary arts and concession areas.

Nolan Christenson studies up on fuel cell operation. As a student in Alexandria High School's science academy, he is preparing for a future that may include working for ALP Utilities, or Western Area Power Administration (Photo by ALP Utilities)

Nolan Christenson studies up on fuel cell operation. A student in Alexandria High School’s science academy, Nolan’s future may include working for ALP Utilities, or Western Area Power Administration. (Photo by ALP Utilities)

Like participating in the STEAM Expo, offering incentives to improve energy efficiency in schools is more than just good customer relations—it is an investment in the future. Money the district saves on energy costs can be used to educate students in science, technology, engineering, arts and math. More students studying those disciplines today mean a better-prepared workforce tomorrow. ALP Utilities may one day hire some of those students to provide the community with reliable electricity and help more businesses manage their energy use.

If not quite the “Circle of Life,” you could call it a Circle of Sustainability, and Western is pleased to loan our customers educational displays to keep it going.

USDA Rural Energy for America Program supports wind energy, much more

Award recognizes program’s contribution to community wind development

Windustry’s Redirecting to a non-government site Community Wind Distinguished Service Award for 2015 went to a champion of energy efficiency and renewable energy development in small towns and farming communities.

Left to right - Larry Flowers, Wind Consulting, Colorado; John Beeler, USDA; Venus Welch-White, PhD, Management and Program Analyst; Sam Rikkers, Deputy Administrator; Lisa Daniels, Windustry, Minnesota; Heather Rhoads-Weaver, eFormative Options, Washington; Tom Wind, Wind Utility Associates, Iowa (Photo by Windustry)

Left to right – Larry Flowers, Wind Consulting, Colorado; John Beeler, USDA; Venus Welch-White, PhD, Management and Program Analyst; Sam Rikkers, Deputy Administrator; Lisa Daniels, Windustry, Minnesota; Heather Rhoads-Weaver, eFormative Options, Washington; Tom Wind, Wind Utility Associates, Iowa (Photo by Windustry)

The Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) received the award for its exemplary efforts to break new ground in making community and distributed wind accessible to all. The Windustry board of directors and a group of wind professionals presented the award to John Beeler of the USDA on March 26 at the advocacy group’s headquarters in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Funding for renewables, efficiency
REAP has done outstanding work for rural communities since 2002, providing guaranteed loan financing and grant funding for a wide variety of renewable energy systems and energy-efficiency improvements.

In addition to wind generation, agricultural producers and rural small businesses may use REAP funds to buy, install or build:

  • Biomass (e.g. biodiesel and ethanol, anaerobic digesters, and solid fuels)
  • Geothermal for electric generation or direct use
  • Hydrogen
  • Small and large solar generation

The 2008 Farm Bill added tidal, wave, ocean thermal and hydroelectric systems below 30 megawatts to the list of eligible technologies.

REAP grants also fund projects that save energy (electricity, propane or natural gas or diesel fuel). Dairy pumps and cooling systems, weatherization of poultry houses, efficient lighting and ventilation, irrigation equipment, industrial motors and supermarket refrigeration systems are eligible.

Energy-efficiency grants cannot be used to expand facilities, or to support agricultural equipment or other vehicles. For renewable energy systems, only proven, commercially available and pre-commercial technology is eligible. Residential renewable energy systems do not qualify for grants, unless a small business, such as a rural electric cooperative, owns the system. Also, grants cannot fund research and development activities.

Still time to apply for 2015
Funding for Fiscal Year 2014 and FY2015 were combined this year for a total of $101 million, most of which has been allocated. However, the application deadline for the final round of REAP funding in 2015 is June 30.

Applicants should contact their USDA state energy coordinator Redirecting to a non-government site early. State energy coordinators can help review applications and offer guidance, but they generally have less time to assist closer to the deadline. FarmEnergy.org, a website that provides information on the Energy Title programs of the Federal Farm Bill, is another source of assistance to newcomers to the application process.

Utilities also benefit from this often-overlooked source of funding for projects that support their efficiency and renewable energy goals and requirements. Contact your local REAP office to learn more about the application process, and then share that knowledge with eligible customers. You will not only increase customer loyalty, you may be helping REAP to win its next award.

Source: Western’s Green Power News via Windustry, 4/18/15