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Energy Newsbriefs Blog

This current awareness service is prepared by the WSU Energy Program Library with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy State Energy Program. This information is provided for energy professionals and interested members of the public to highlight recent energy-related news, articles, and reports that discuss energy efficiency, energy conservation, and renewable sources of energy in engineering and policy circles.


Impact of Advancements in Model Energy Codes: What's the Effect on Insulation?

The Construction Specifier, Jan. 2014, by Jared O. Blum. and click or scroll to page 66.

"In response to a national interest in, and policies for, conservation of energy, model energy codes are striving to advance the way commercial and residential building envelopes are insulated. The effect on how design professionals specify materials for thermal management will be substantial."

Distributed Solar Explosion

Public Power, Jan/Feb 2014, by Paul Zummo.

"Rates designed to encourage installation of distributed solar energy resources worked better than expected. Now the utility industry must address safety, operational and customer inequity."

Energy Conservation Standards for Electric Motors: Proposed Rulemaking

U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office (EERE), Dec. 6, 2013.!docketDetail;D=EERE-2010-BT-STD-0027

"Consistent with changes made by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA 2007), DOE is amending its electric motor standards by expanding the scope of the electric motors that would be regulated. Under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA), as amended, DOE must publish a final rule determining whether to amend its standards no later than 24 months after the effective date of the previous final rule."

Unlocking Demand: An Analysis of State Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Financing Programs in the Buildings and Industrial Sectors

National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO), Dec. 2013, by Sandy Fazeli, NASEO Program Manager.

"The types of financing tools used by State Energy Offices have evolved from revolving loan funds to sophisticated credit enhancement mechanisms and new approaches to bond financing. With successful models expanding across the United States, the National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) has completed an analysis of state energy financing programs focused on the buildings and industrial sectors to identify and evaluate approaches that have been implemented by State Energy Offices and their public and private partners."

Evolving Codes: Ensuring Wind Turbine Safety

North American Clean Energy, Jan/Feb 2014, by Kenneth Boyce.

"Wind power generation resources continue to grow in North America and around the world, now representing a significant proportion of new electrical power capacity. In cases of rapid development and deployment of energy infrastructure--such as what is happening with new wind power resources--standards become a critical foundation."

The Best Wind Power Hardware of 2013

Windpower Monthly, January 2014.

"We pick our way through the technological trends and product developments of 2013 to find and award the cream of the crop. We proudly present the medal-worthy winners and the runners-up in Windpower Monthly's second turbines of the year report."

Buying Renewables Through Utilities: Duke Energy Gives Customers What They Want

Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) Outlook, Dec. 30, 2013, by Owen Smith.

"Duke Energy officially has the green light from the North Carolina Utilities Commission to launch a new renewable energy program in North Carolina. The program will enable select large customers to secure up to 100 percent of new electricity needs from renewable energy sources."

New U.S. Department of Energy Rules Lauded for Rating Commercial Systems

Press Release, Appliance Standards Awareness Project (ASAP), Jan. 9, 2014.

"United Technologies Corp. (UTC) and the Appliance Standards Awareness Project (ASAP) today praised the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) for finalizing new methods for rating and certifying commercial air conditioning, heating, water heating and refrigeration equipment. The negotiated rule, which DOE published on Dec. 31, 2013, was developed by the first working group convened by DOE’s Appliance Standards Rulemaking Federal Advisory Committee...." Press Release includes a link to the Dec. 31, 2013 Federal Register, Final Rule on Energy Conservation Program: Alternative Efficiency Determination Methods, Basic Model Definition, and Compliance for Commercial HVAC, Refrigeration, and WH Equipment.

Utility Community Solar Handbook: Understanding and Supporting Utility Program Development

Solar Electric Power Association, Dec. 2013.

"This handbook provides the utility's perspective on utility managed community solar program development and is a resource for government officials, regulators, community organizers, solar energy advocates, non-profits and interested citizens who want to support or educate their local utility in implementing a new or improving an existing community solar project."

EPA Releases Proposed Update to Residential Wood Heater Standards

Biomass Magazine, Jan. 3, 2014, by Anna Simet.

"The U.S. EPA has released its New Source Performance Standards proposal for new woodstoves and heaters, which go into effect in 2015." Article includes a link to the full EPA report.


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