MEEA Minute Monthly Newsletter - December 2013

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MEEA Minute - DECEMBER 2013
Inside This Issue
  • MEEA Names New Executive Director
  • 2014 Midwest Energy Solutions-Tues., Jan. 14
  • Pre-Conference Adv. Lighting Reception-Jan. 13
  • Pre-Conference Industrial Efficiency Summit-Jan. 14
  • BOC Stakeholder Meeting & Lunch-Jan. 15
  • Last Chance-Midwest Adv. Lighting Solutions Guide
  • DOE Case Study Highlights MEEA Partnerships on Iowa Furnaces
  • Lights for Learning Blazes Past 1,000 Youth Fundraisers
  • MEEA Case Studies Highlight Commercial Energy Savings in Ohio
  • Webinar Recap: Best Practices in Program Delivery
  • Webinar Recap: ACEEE 2013 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard-A Midwest Perspective
  • MEEA Hosts Annual BOC National Partners Meeting
  • BOC Maintenance Seminars Attract 85 Participants in Kansas
  • Event Recap: Better Buildings Better Business Conference
  • Latest Advanced Lighting News
  • Upcoming Events

MEEA Names Doug Newman as New Executive Director

MEEA's Board is proud to announce that Doug Newman will be become MEEA's new Executive Director staring January 2, 2014. Doug has more than three decades of experience building public-private partnerships in the energy and resource conservation fields and will lead MEEA during a time of tremendous growth in the organization and increasing overall energy efficiency investment in the Midwest.

"Doug's experience is an ideal fit to be the next Executive Director of MEEA. He has championed energy efficiency for many years through his work in the public and private sectors working with all the key stakeholders," said MEEA Board Chairman Diane Munns. "Investment in energy efficiency is expected to reach $1.8 billion annually in the Midwest by 2015, and Doug is the leader who can help us ensure that continued growth."

Innovation will be one of Newman's top priorities when he starts at MEEA.

"We have an opportunity to guide further innovations in efficiency programs, applied technology research, education and training and public policy to advance the essential cause of energy efficiency," Newman said.

Munns said Newman will also help advance MEEA's initiatives, which include:

  • increasing the industrial sector's involvement in energy efficiency, which is especially important because of the Midwest's strong manufacturing base
  • developing new lighting and energy efficiency programs for utilities
  • promoting increased adoption and compliance of building energy codes

Another goal for Newman is to continue the growth of MEEA, which has more than 150 members and builds partnerships with companies, organizations and policymakers from Ohio to the Dakotas. Newman is currently the director of the National Energy Center for Sustainable Communities and managing partner of Sustainable Community Development Consultants (SCD). The consulting firm assists local government agencies and development companies in the planning of energy efficient and resilient community development projects.

"With Doug at the helm, the National Energy Center has produced groundbreaking research about best practices for community energy efficiency," Munns said. "We look forward to Doug sharing this expertise with MEEA staff and members."

Newman previously held senior posts at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and was manager of energy and environmental programs for the Gas Technology Institute. Newman has developed and delivered training programs on energy efficient sustainable community development in Australia, China, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico and the U.S. Newman also has served as an Adjunct Faculty Researcher in the College of Engineering and the Department of Physics at San Diego State University in San Diego, Calif.


2014 Midwest Energy Solutions Conference Starts Tues., Jan. 14th

Planning on attending the 2014 Midwest Energy Solutions Conference?
Don't Delay - Register Now!

Agenda Updates
Up-to-date agenda and speaker information is available on our Agenda page.

Sponsors & Exhibitors
Thank you to our generous sponsors and exhibitors.

Interested in becoming a sponsor or exhibitor? Space is still available. MEEA Members receive a 20% discount off of sponsorship packages. For more information contact conference@mwalliance.org or visit our Sponsor page. Don't miss this chance to put a spotlight on your company before our 600 attendees.

Book your hotel at a discounted rate for Midwest Energy Solutions Conference attendees today. More information is found on our Housing page.

Airport Transportation
Airport Express is offering all attendees a 10% discount off of trips to/ from Midway and O'Hare Airports. Find the code on our Housing page.

MES 2014
Online Registration

Register for MEEA's Pre-Conference Advanced Lighting Reception on Mon., Jan. 13th

Advanced lighting professionals are invited to join members of MEEA's Lighting Utility Midwest Exchange Network (Midwest LUMEN) for an exclusive reception preceding the Midwest Energy Solutions Conference. MEEA Members will receive a 50% discount when they sign up online with their conference registration. The reception will be at MEEA's office in the Civic Opera Building on Monday, January 13th from 5:30 - 7:30. MEEA Members receive a discounted registration fee.

Midwest Industrial Energy Efficiency Pre-conference Summit: Scoring Savings with Effective Program Design

Join the Midwestern Governors Association for a pre-conference Industrial Efficiency Summit on the very best-in-class ratepayer funded industrial energy efficiency programs and learn how they are working for the industries that use them.

The SEEAction Network, World Resources Institute, and the Ohio Manufactures Association will present new reports on programmatic benefits and best practices and a panel of industries will share the characteristics of programs that work for them.

The Summit will be on Tuesday, January 14 from 8:30am - 12:00pm at the Fairmont Hotel in Chicago. There is no charge for the event. MES Conference attendees and others are welcome, but advance registration is requested for. The Summit is sponsored by the Midwestern Governors Association, the Minnesota Department of Commerce Division of Energy Resources, the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Great Plains Institute, Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance, and World Resources Institute.

Registration link and more information is found on our calendar, or RSVP to the right.

Summit RSVP

MEEA's Annual BOC Stakeholders Meeting & Lunch-January 15th at 2014 MES Conference

All BOC Partners and Stakeholders are invited to attend our annual Building Operator Certification Stakeholders meeting and lunch during the 2014 Midwest Energy Solutions conference on Wednesday, January 15th from 12:45pm - 2:00pm. You must be registered for the Midwest Energy Solutions conference to attend this meeting.

The BOC team will discuss new innovative programs in the Midwest, graduate metrics and lead a discussion about new pricing models and outreach strategies.

RSVP Online-Spots are Limited!

If you have not yet registered for MES you can do so on our conference site. For more information, contact Katie Hanson at khanson@mwalliance.org or 312-784-7277.

Last Chance to be Featured in the Midwest Advanced Lighting Solutions Guide

Time is running out to feature your company's Midwestern case studies, best practices, and proven products in the first ever Midwest Advanced Lighting Solutions Guide, published for MEEA Members and Midwest LUMEN (formerly Midwest LEDers). The online guide highlights Midwest-focused solutions to utility incentive program needs across sectors. MEEA Members will receive a 20% discount on pages as well as preferential placement.

Contact Rose Jordan at rjordan@mwalliance.org as soon as possible to request additional instructions and design specifications. Designed pages are due no later than Friday, December 27, 2013.

DOE Case Study Highlights MEEA Partnerships on Iowa Furnaces

On December 9th, the Department of Energy published the Case Study, Improving the Field Performance of Natural Gas Furnaces. MEEA worked in conjunction with our Partnership for Advanced Residential Retrofit (PARR) team members to collect and analyze working furnaces that were removed from Iowa homes. The purpose of this research was to investigate the impact of age degradation and typical installation practices on the steady-state furnace efficiency. This research found that 'typical' field installation practices result in less than optimal steady state efficiency and that normal furnace equipment age degradation does not impact steady state efficiency. This research is important to MEEA's HVAC SAVE program because it supports the principal that improved installation practices, similar to what is taught in the program, can improve a furnace's in field operating efficiency. For questions or more information, contact Scott Yee at syee@mwalliance.org.

Lights for Learning® Blazes Past 1,000 Youth Fundraisers

As of mid-December, over 185,000 new energy efficient light bulbs, holiday strands, and nightlights are brightening Illinois households through Lights for Learning youth fundraisers! So far, 58 organizations have hosted Lights for Learning® fundraisers this school year, pushing the program past the 1,000 fundraiser mark.

A Northbrook Middle School fundraiser was recently profiled by the Mendota Reporter, lauded for their holistic approach to program participation. Mrs. Brewer's students prepared for the energy efficiency presentations through two full weeks of class work, including research, discussion, and writing assignments that focused on the use of compact fluorescent light bulbs and associated energy and monetary savings. Fundraiser proceeds will be used to purchase new books for students' use during reading workshops. For more information on MEEA's Lights for Learning program, email Catie Krasner at ckrasner@mwalliance.org.

MEEA Case Studies Highlight Commercial Energy Savings in Ohio

Ohio's energy efficiency portfolio standard, established in 2008 under SB 221, has withstood recent attempts to weaken the consumer benefits and value of energy efficiency. In response to comments received during meetings with Ohio legislators, MEEA developed case studies highlighting businesses in Ohio that have benefited from customer-funded energy efficiency programs. These case studies demonstrate the considerable savings realized from implementing energy efficiency improvements with help from utility incentives.
Kroger Data Center Upgrade:
The Kroger Company, one of the nation's largest grocery store chains, recently performed efficiency upgrades to their data center in Cincinnati, Ohio. Through participation in Duke Energy's Smart $aver® incentive program, Kroger received a $130,000 rebate for replacing their Cincinnati data center's old cooling system with a high-efficiency alternative. Since the project came online in August 2010, the cooling system upgrade has resulted in 4,779,844 kWh in energy savings and over $326,000 of total energy cost savings for the company. Duke Energy's rebate lowered the upfront equipment costs and gave Kroger an opportunity to make an energy efficiency improvement at a more affordable cost. Kroger Case Study
Garfield Suites HVAC Upgrades:
Garfield Suites, an all-suite full-service hotel in downtown Cincinnati, replaced 342 older and inefficient packaged terminal air conditioning units with high-efficiency alternatives. Duke Energy's Smart $aver® incentive program awarded Garfield Suites with $85,000 for installing energy efficient packaged terminal heat pumps, totaling 20% of the program cost. In addition to increased guest comfort, the upgrade resulted in the hotel saving 880,000 kilowatt-hours annually, which equates to approximately $80,000 annual savings in operating costs. Garfield Suites Case Study
Retrofitting Ohio's Older Buildings:
Utilizing the incentives offered by First Energy, along with financing under the state's Commercial-PACE program, businesses in Toledo and Northwest Ohio have completed upgrades to their heating, cooling, and lighting systems. The City of Toledo retrofitted firehouses, the courthouse and other municipal buildings, thanks in large part to more than $100,000 received from First Energy's incentive program. A car dealership in Maumee received a $61,000 rebate for installing interior and exterior LEDs, saving $150,000 annually in operating costs. Working with their utility and the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority, many local businesses are realizing annual savings for their business, while reducing the payback period on their energy efficiency improvements. Toledo-Lucas County Case Study
As challenges to Ohio's EEPS proceed throughout 2014, MEEA will continue to provide educational materials and work with stakeholders to ensure the value of Ohio's energy efficiency standards remains intact. For questions or if interested in participating in a case study, contact Cassandra Kubes at ckubes@mwalliance.org.

MEEA Marketing Webinar Recap: Best Practices in Program Delivery

MEEA hosted a webinar on December 12th on Making Good Programs Great: Best Practices in Program Delivery. MEEA Member EnergySavvy's COO Scott Case hosted a panel comprised of Luke Giustra from Puget Sound Energy, Ruth Bell of Cascadia Consulting Group, and Adele Bihn from Data Marketing, Inc. The panel discussed how best to structure marketing programs, where to invest in tools, technology, and targeting customers, and best practices to engage those customers and stakeholders.

The conversation was broken into four segments:

  • Simplifying incentives and communications for customers to help them understand the benefits of energy savings
  • Using micro-targeting to engage the right audience with the right offers, using demographics and metrics
  • Nurturing and educating customers about programs along without annoying them
  • Reducing data requirements contractors, saving time and money.

You can view the webinar recording on our archive. If you would like additional information, you can contact Jennifer Rhodes at jrhodes@mwalliance.org or (312) 784-7263.

MEEA Policy Webinar Recap: ACEEE 2013 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard-A Midwest Perspective

MEEA's policy webinar, ACEEE 2013 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard: A Midwest Perspective, was held on December 12. The webinar took a closer look at the Midwest region's success in ACEEE's recently released State Energy Efficiency Scorecard. Annie Downs, State Policy Research Analyst at ACEEE, provided an overview of the scorecard's methodology, and discussed the Midwest's ranking and overall progress in the areas of utility policies and building codes. Illinois placed among the Top 10 states overall for the first time, while Ohio ranked 18th and is one of five states in the scorecard's Most Improved category.

Presentations followed highlighting utility energy efficiency programs, and building code adoption and compliance initiatives throughout several Midwest states. Michelle Cross, CEI Program Coordinator at AEP Ohio, discussed the utility's Continuous Energy Improvement program offered to industrial customers. The program provides tools to identify and implement low/no-cost energy saving strategies for over 30 industrial customers, and has produced savings of 15,500,000 kWh to date.

For the building codes discussion, Alison Lindburg, Senior Policy Associate with Fresh Energy, gave an overview of Minnesota's progress with adopting the 2012 IECC for residential and commercial buildings. Danielle Jensen, Public and Legislative Liaison with Nebraska Energy Office, discussed the formation of the Nebraska Energy Code Compliance Collaborative. Her presentation included an overview of the stakeholder engagement process, along with the success to date of compliance evaluation and training and education initiatives. David Baker, Energy Division Manager with the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, closed the webinar with a presentation discussing Illinois' claimed savings program, CANDI, and provided resources for blower door certification and codes support.

For questions, comments, or ideas for future policy webinars, contact Cassandra Kubes at ckubes@mwalliance.org or 312-374-0930. A recording of the webinar is available in our archive.

MEEA Hosts Annual BOC National Partners Meeting

MEEA hosted the annual Building Operators Certification (BOC) National Partners Meeting November 7-8, 2013 organized by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Council (NEEC). Ten different partner organizations from across the continent connected to speak about national trends in energy efficiency, the rolling out of the updated BOC curriculum for 2014, and the sharing of best practices.

Steve Kismohr, Senior Technical Manager at MEEA, presented on energy benchmarking and how Midwestern cities are adopting various policies regarding it, while MEEA's Director of Programs, Aimee Skrzekut, provided an overview of national and regional energy efficiency trends and emergent technologies impacting commercial buildings. The national BOC team strategized about ways to successfully conduct a BOC maintenance fair, how to start new partnerships in currently unexplored sectors, as well as how to prepare building operators to secure buy in and support of energy efficiency improvements in their facilities from upper level management. Also included in this meeting was an Employer Roundtable, where John Fuhrer, Director of Operations & Facilities of North Shore School District, Tony Marzano, Chief Engineer of Jones, Lang and LaSalle, and Dennis Burns, Chief Engineer of Cushman & Wakefield spoke to the partners about what they hope to achieve with sending their employees to building operator training as well as how to ensure that BOC is successfully implemented back in the workplace.

For more information on BOC Maintenance or the National Partners Meeting, please contact Sarah Edwards at sedwards@mwalliance.org or 312-784-7269.

BOC Maintenance Seminars Attract 85 Participants in Kansas

Westar Energy recently held two Building Operator Certification (BOC) Maintenance Seminars in Topeka and Wichita, Kansas that had over 85 participants combined. The utility attracted many BOC graduates interested in power quality and electrical safety topics covered at the seminars. One participant stated that it was "one of the best, most organized, informative and interesting seminars I've been to."

Participants were able to earn a total of 7 maintenance points in Topeka and 6 maintenance points in Wichita, which allowed BOC alum to earn their yearly Level 1 certification maintenance points in one day. Karen Smith, Account Manager of Customer & Community Relations at Westar said, "We wanted to provide what we thought was the greatest value to our customer. We also wanted to provide an opportunity to showcase what BOC can do for our customers." In 2014, MEEA will be looking to increase BOC maintenance opportunities throughout its footprint through more continuing education opportunities, such as relevant webinars and tech talks.

Event Recap: Better Buildings Better Business Conference

On December 10th and 11th, MEEA staff from the residential programs team and the codes team attended the Better Buildings Better Business conference in Rosemont, Illinois, hosted by the Energy Center of Wisconsin. The conference focused on best practices during construction and renovation of residential and small commercial buildings, with an emphasis on energy efficiency. There were both educational sessions and demonstrations of building techniques, as well as an exhibition hall to showcase the latest in building innovation. MEEA sponsored a booth in the exhibition hall to promote Illinois Home Performance, a utility-sponsored program, operated in collaboration with Illinois Department of Economic Opportunity. IHP partners with local contractors and aims to achieve energy savings for Illinois homeowners in existing homes.

Isaac Elnecave, Senior Policy Manager at MEEA, was one of the keynote speakers that opened up the conference. Isaac spoke about building energy codes in the Midwest, including the vision for energy code compliance improvement that will help achieve net zero energy buildings in the future. Will Baker, Program Manager at MEEA, moderated a panel discussion on the energy efficiency services opportunity for the HVAC industry.

For more information, please visit the 2013 Better Buildings Better Business Illinois conference website.

Latest Advanced Lighting News

2013 DOE SSL Market Introduction Workshop a Success
More than 200 attendees gathered in Portland, OR this November for the 2013 SSL Market Introduction Workshop to share updates and strategies to accelerate market adoption of LED lighting. MEEA's Lighting and Education Program Manager represented Midwest LUMEN members at the Technical Information Network on Solid-State Lighting (TINSSL) Utility and Energy Efficiency Planning Roundtable where a group of national lighting stakeholders strategized about SSL priorities in 2014. Free pre-workshop LED educational sessions were followed by a guided tour of a CALiPER mock-up facility currently outfitted with LED T8 replacement lamps and LED PAR38 lamps. The workshop encompassed two days of lively, informative panels and discussion, and the presentations and materials are now available on DOE's website.

Changes for LED Lighting Facts®
Manufacturers now have the option of grouping related products as a family and testing only one member of that family. In addition, a new verification testing program is under way, designed to ensure that the performance information listed in the LED Lighting Facts product database remains reliable and accurate.

The Lighting Research Center forms 'Light and Health Alliance'
The Lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has formed a collaboration among members and practitioners to enable the broad adoption of lighting for human health by producing factual information based on research and by visualizing future applications.

DesignLights Consortium® Releases Final Testing Lab Requirements
The DLC now requires that product testing for DLC applications be conducted at an approved laboratory appropriate for the performance being evaluated. Visit the DLC website to learn more.

Illuminated: The New ENERGY STAR Lighting Podcast
Energy Star invites lighting enthusiasts to take a break from the holiday playlist to listen to the new ENERGY STAR lighting podcast, "Illuminated." This two-part podcast features EPA's Taylor Jantz-Sell, Naomi Miller from PNNL, Noah Horowitz from NRDC, and Mark Voykovic from The Home Depot. Part One provides guidance on how to shop for energy efficient light bulbs, and Part Two addresses changing attitudes about lighting, a look at what's next, and even more great purchasing tips. Visit www.energystar.gov/podcasts to listen to "Illuminated" and other ENERGY STAR podcasts.

ENERGY STAR Challenge Hits 5.5 Million LED Bulbs Milestone
On Earth Day 2013, EPA launched the ENERGY STAR LED Bulb Challenge, urging partners to work together to sell 20 million ENERGY STAR certified LED bulbs by Earth Day 2014. To date, more than 5.5 million LED bulbs have been sold as part of the challenge; ongoing progress can be tracked online. The ENERGY STAR LED bulbs sold since Earth Day 2013 will reduce emissions equivalent to those from 43,000 vehicles and save $33 million per year in energy costs. Interested in supporting the challenge? EPA has a new toolkit and resources, including the new ENERGY STAR Light Bulb Purchasing Guide.

Holiday Cheer with ENERGY STAR Light Strings
The holiday season is upon us, and so is the opportunity to save even more money on electricity bills. Say goodbye to those old incandescent strings and use 50% less energy with ENERGY STAR certified holiday lights. Certified data about these festive lights is available online. Consider supporting the students by purchasing ENERGY STAR holiday strands through an Illinois Lights for Learning® fundraiser.

DOE Announces Funding Opportunity for Solid-State Lighting Research and Development
The U.S. Department of Energy is directing up to $10 million toward SSL core technology research, product development and U.S. manufacturing. Up to 10 projects will be selected for funding. Concept papers are due by January 8, 2014, and applications are due by February 24, 2014. More information is available online.

Don't Miss These New U.S. DOE Publications:

Dimming LEDs with Phase-Cut Dimmers: The Specifier's Process for Maximizing Success

  • This new GATEWAY report provides guidance for dimming LEDs, providing general guidance and step-by-step procedures for designing phase-controlled LED dimming on both new and existing projects.

CALiPER Report 20.1

  • The latest CALiPER report extends the findings of Application Summary Report 20 to focus on subjective evaluation of beam quality, shadow quality, and color quality in PAR38 lamps.

SSL Pricing and Efficacy Trend Analysis for Utility Program Planning

  • This new DOE report provides application-specific projections to help utility and efficiency program managers prioritize by LED application or category.

Color Maintenance of LEDs in Laboratory and Field Applications

  • This report details the metrics used for quantifying color shift, provides example data, discusses known mechanisms of color shift, and provides guidance on how to monitor performance and evaluate warranties.

SSL Manufacturing R&D Roadmap

  • The DOE roadmap serves as a guide for manufacturing R&D priorities to reduce costs and enhance the quality of SSL products. It represents industry consensus on the expected evolution of SSL manufacturing, best practices, and opportunities for improvement and collaboration.

CALiPER Snapshot Report: LED A Lamps

  • DOE's CALiPER program has released a Snapshot Report on LED A lamps, which utilizes the LED Lighting Facts® program's extensive product database to help industry stakeholders understand the current state and trajectory of the market for A lamps. Download the full report on the DOE SSL website.

Upcoming Midwest Events & Webinars

U.S. DOE 2014 Solid-State Lighting Workshop Schedule

DOE has announced the 2014 SSL workshop schedule. DOE's interactive SSL workshops create a crossroads for academia, industry, and government leaders to connect, share updates and diverse perspectives, and participate in shaping the future of lighting. Hold these dates for 2014!

    • R&D Workshop: January 28-30, 2014
    • Manufacturing R&D Workshop: May 7-8, 2014
    • Market Introduction Workshop: November 11-13, 2014
ENERGY STAR RoadMapping Meeting Rescheduled for January 30, 2014

EPA announced the new date for the ENERGY STAR Lighting RoadMapping Meeting co-hosted by NEMA on January 30th 2014 at NEMA's headquarters in Arlington, Virginia. Key objectives for this road mapping discussion are:

  • Build on 15 years of partnership to foster the future success of the ENERGY STAR program
  • Look ahead creatively to the next five years with the goal of realizing ENERGY STAR requirements that deliver on consumer expectations for lighting quality and efficiency; and
  • Establish pathways to furthering engagement between the EPA's ENERGY STAR program and lighting manufacturers and energy efficiency program sponsors on an ongoing basis.

For any questions about registration, contact Alex Boesenberg at Alex.Boesenberg@nema.org.

For more Events, visit our Calendar at www.mwalliance.org/calendar