- Newsletter (329)
Welcome to the weekly newsletter of the Michigan Energy Innovation Business Council (Michigan EIBC), the business voice for advanced energy in Michigan. Here’s what’s new this week:
Energy Storage Roadmap for EGLE Released At Convening
After about a year of work, the Energy Storage Roadmap is here! Completed at the request of the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE), the roadmap represents both an analysis of the economics of energy storage technologies and a strategy for Michigan policymakers to hit ambitious targets: 2,500 MW energy storage by 2030 and 4,000 MW by 2040, which the roadmap identified as needed to enable more integration of renewable energy generation to replace retiring fossil fuel plants, ensure grid reliability and avoid curtailment of renewables.
At the virtual Energy Storage Convening on March 14, the Institute for Energy Innovation (IEI) presented the roadmap to the public. IEI completed the report with partners Michigan EIBC, Michigan EIBC member 5 Lakes Energy and Michigan State University College of Engineering Associate Professor Dr. Annick Anctil.
In opening remarks at the convening, EGLE’s Assistant Division Director of Materials Management and Energy Ombudsman Robert Jackson listed the many benefits of energy storage that the roadmap explores: enhanced grid reliability, the value of behind-the-meter storage for commercial & industrial customers, improving the integrated resource planning (IRP) of investor-owned utilities and easing the integration of EV charging into the grid, among others. Then, after presentations from IEI and Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman, 5 Lakes Energy’s Douglas Jester, and Dr. Anctil, the Convening’s participants split up into breakout rooms to share ideas on how to begin to implement the roadmap’s recommendations around rate design, storage targets, vehicle-to-grid charging, competitive procurement of storage and IRP modeling.
The roadmap also recommended that a ‘value of storage’ study should now be conducted to quantify the benefits of energy storage.
The state government should also undertake a number of measures, including installing BTM storage at public buildings to “lead by example,” figure out how to employ enough people for the energy storage sector and provide financing through Michigan’s energy efficiency and renewable energy revolving loan fund.
Regulators meanwhile should start requiring utilities to include accurate evaluations of the energy storage opportunities in their service area and how they could meet storage targets, if established. The regulatory Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) should also require utilities to conduct competitive energy storage procurements with a level playing field for third-part ownership models.
Other recommendations for regulators included requiring utilities to produce maps of publicly available hosting capacity for energy storage which developers could use in their decision-making and to support the implementation of FERC Order 841 and Order 2222, which order regional transmission operators (RTOs) and independent system operators (ISOs) to enable energy storage to participate in wholesale electricity markets.
Michigan EIBC Testifies on Building Code Update
The future of energy efficiency in Michigan is at a crossroads this year as the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) updates the state’s building codes for the first time in six years. As we have written about before, LARA will have to choose whether to adopt the most ambitious standards for buildings that would lead to deeper reductions in energy waste than alternative codes would, and also whether to make forward-looking requirements like ensuring that new buildings are EV-ready.
As LARA gets closer to making that decision, Michigan EIBC is committed to pushing for the best building code update possible. Toward that end, this week Michigan EIBC Director of Research and Policy Grace Michienzi testified before LARA’s Bureau of Construction Codes, Administrative Services Division about the proposal to amend the Michigan Energy Code for the first time in six years.
“Updating our building codes is one of the greatest tools the State of Michigan holds to make necessary advancements in energy efficiency, advanced mobility, and building electrification,” Grace said. She called for adopting the 2021 residential edition of the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), which represents approximately a 12% improvement in efficiency through more efficient thermal envelopes, improved mechanical system efficiency, improved lighting, and other cost-effective improvements compared to the 2015 model code, which is similar to Michigan’s current code. Grace also recommended that energy monitoring requirements from the 2021 IECC commercial code, which were removed from LARA’s draft proposal, be restored, so that building performance improvements are monitored and maintained over time.
Grace also pointed to additions that LARA should make to go beyond the 2021 IECC codes. For example, she called for language requiring that all new homes are EV ready and commercial buildings/multi-family housing with parking include EV ready spaces. “It is more cost-effective to ensure a new home or commercial building is EV ready when it is being built or undergoing major renovations than to conduct these extensive electrical upgrades when a charger is later installed,” her testimony said.
She also encouraged LARA to “include readiness provisions for building electrification and important building-grid integration technologies, including smart thermostats, into the residential code to further save Michigan residents money, achieve Michigan’s carbon reduction goals, and reduce indoor air pollution.” Additionally, she suggested LARA include on-site renewable generation and energy storage readiness requirements, which would “support a growing industry in Michigan, reduce carbon emissions, and could reduce costs for commercial business owners while improving reliability and resiliency.”
Main Stage Panel Announced for 10th Annual Michigan Energy Innovators Conference
Tickets are on sale for the Michigan Energy Innovators Conference on April 26 at Michigan State University’s Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center in East Lansing. Typically our most popular event of the year, the Michigan Energy Innovators Conference provides attendees an opportunity to network, learn about innovations in advanced energy, and get an overview on the latest policy developments. This event includes: main-stage panels, several break-out panels with dozens of expert panelists, TED-style talks, and networking.
MAIN STAGE + BREAKOUT SESSIONS
- Peering Into the Crystal Ball: What the 2022 Election Could Mean for Energy Policy
- Moderator: JR Tolbert, Advanced Energy Economy
- Dr. Deeana Ahmed, Our Next Energy
- Lauren Gibbons, MLive
- Zachary Gorchow, Gongwer
- Harnessing Federal Resources: Opportunities to Enable Michigan’s Energy Future
- Floods, Blizzards, and Heat Waves: The Role of DERs in Improving Reliability and Resilience
- Energy Storage: Exploring the Future of the “Bacon of the Grid”
- All Energy is Local: The Role of City, Township, and County Government
Tony G. Reames was most recently a professor of environment and sustainability at the University of Michigan, where he established the Urban Energy Justice Lab to conduct research and develop solutions on the production and persistence of racial, income, and geographic disparities in energy access, affordability, decision making, and participation. Reames served as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and worked in both the private and public sectors as a licensed professional engineer. He earned a B.S. in Civil Engineering from North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University, a Master of Engineering Management from Kansas State University, and a Ph.D. in Public Administration from the University of Kansas.
Attendees of our Conference are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or have a negative COVID-19 test within 72 hours of the start of the event. The CDC defines fully vaccinated as two weeks after receiving a second shot of a two-dose vaccine or two weeks after the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine. We will ask for proof of vaccine or negative test at registration. We will follow CDC guidelines with regards to COVID-19 and keep everyone updated as we get closer to the Conference. Michigan EIBC strongly suggests all attendees be either vaccinated or wear a mask inside the venue at all times if not fully vaccinated.
THANK YOU TO OUR CURRENT SPONSORS!
Gross Electric, Inc. is the oldest independent, family owned lighting store in the area. For over 100 years, we have been providing lighting and electrical products to the commercial, institutional, and residential markets. With over 175 combined years of experience in the industry, the expertise of our electrical supplies sales staff is unparalleled.
Commonwealth Associates Inc.
Commonwealth Associates, Inc. (“Commonwealth”) is a 100% employee-owned and -managed engineering and consulting firm profiled among the 2017 Top 10 Electrical Design Firms in the nation by EC&M magazine. Every day, our team of nearly 300 project managers, engineers, environmental experts, real estate brokers, licensed UAV pilots and other team members combine their talents to influence and shape the secure energy future. We do this by collaborating and innovating to meet the emerging needs of our utility, IPP, governmental, industrial and institutional clients. We also provide leadership to the industry through our professionals’ active involvement planning and presenting at industry conferences and serving on the committees that are writing tomorrow’s standards today. Our primary focus areas include: Power Generation and Energy, including Distributed Energy Resources and Microgrids; Electrical System Studies; Transmission and Distribution Line Engineering; Substation Engineering; Environmental and Permitting Services; Land and Right of Way Services; and Owners Engineering. Headquartered in Jackson, Michigan, Commonwealth has offices in Atlanta, Georgia; Columbus, Ohio; Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Seattle, Washington; and Spokane, Washington.
As a company, esaSolar is dedicated to changing the future of energy by providing simplified solar energy solutions. With over 15 years of experience, we specialize in a range of project development services for utility scale solar energy applications. ESA is an industry leading solar developer which has developed, engineered, constructed, and operated more than 100 utility solar farms across the U.S. and Europe. With over 1 GW of projects between development, construction and operating assets, ESA has managed virtually every aspect of a solar project from start to finish.
Pivot Energy is a Denver-based solar energy company that is focused on helping accelerate the rapid transition taking place in the energy industry toward power generation that is cleaner, and more decentralized. Pivot offers a distributed energy platform that includes a range of services and software aimed at serving the full commercial solar ecosystem, including retail customers, project developers, system operators, utilities, and financiers. The company develops, finances, builds, and manages community and commercial solar projects around the country. Pivot operates on a triple bottom line basis, measuring success by the positive impact to people, planet, and profit.
Michigan Energy News
- “The draft (of the) MI Healthy Climate plan is a good start in positioning Michigan to be a leader in the advanced energy sector,” Michigan EIBC President Laura Sherman is quoted as saying.
- An administrative law judge recommends that regulators reject Consumers Energy’s purchase of natural gas power plants from parent company CMS Energy at the proposed purchase price, saying their value is inflated, and also says the utility needs to do more research before it should go ahead with its plan to retire unit 3 of the Campbell plant by 2025.
- In response to the judge’s proposed decision, Consumers Energy is threatening to cancel plans to retire coal-fired power.
- The EV industry has boosted Michigan’s role as a tech hub, but the battle for talent remains fierce, MLive reports.
- In a move partially driven by emissions reductions from power plants, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ups its rating of air quality in Metro Detroit.
- Michigan EIBC member Orion Renewable Energy Group is working on a potential 100-MW solar project in Lapeer County.
National Energy News
- Virginia regulators approve Dominion Energy’s plan to add 1 GW of renewable energy, including the company’s largest solar-plus-storage project to date.
- Companies are offering schools fleet services for electric school buses at prices that beat diesel school buses.
- EV sales in China nearly tripled between 2020 and 2021, moving the country up the list of countries with most EVs per capita.
- A spike in natural gas prices and a pandemic economic rebound is seeing coal-fired power generation rise in states like Illinois.
- New questions arise over the extent to which combustion of plastics is increasing greenhouse gas emissions from waste-to-energy facilities.
- Florida lawmakers consider a bill to create a unique subsidy program for publicly-owned waste combustion facilities.
Attention Michigan EIBC members: if you have a job announcement you would like in the newsletter, please send a paragraph describing the position and a link to apply to Matt Bandyk at email@example.com. Please include in the email a specific end date for the job posting.
Advanced Energy Economy
Position: Executive Director, Texas Advanced Energy Business Alliance / Policy Director, AEE. Austin, Texas, location preferred, but other Texas locations will be considered.
AEE seeks a smart, innovative, and politically savvy Director to join AEE’s professional services team and lead our Texas engagement as the Executive Director of TAEBA. TAEBA’s Executive Director will lead and shape policy advocacy strategies in Texas and will work collaboratively with team members to develop and implement multi-year strategies and campaigns designed to achieve policy successes at the state and wholesale market level that will expand markets for the advanced energy industry and accelerate the transition to clean energy in Texas.
Advanced Energy Economy
Position: Policy Director – Decision Maker Education and Engagement & Wholesale Markets. East Coast location.
AEE seeks a smart, innovative, and politically savvy Director to join AEE’s professional services team. To support the U.S. transition to 100% clean energy and electrified transportation, the Director will work with AEE team members to engage with and educate key decision makers on advanced energy, and to initiate, develop, and implement multi-year strategies designed to transform federally regulated wholesale electricity markets. The wholesale markets work will focus on building stakeholder coalitions in support of market rule changes necessary to support the growth of clean energy resources and speed the retirement of aging incumbent generating technologies in competitive wholesale electricity markets. The Director will also build and execute programs to educate key decision makers on advanced energy technologies and solutions to energy challenges facing them, whether through work with and at NARUC, regional NARUCs, or through other educational fora.
Lean & Green Michigan
Lean & Green Michigan is seeking a motivated and self-directed individual to join the team, communicating through a variety of media about all aspects of the Lean & Green Michigan PACE program. The successful candidate should have excellent writing and communication skills, experience with social media, enthusiasm for working in the business community, environmental policy, renewable energy and energy efficiency, attention to detail, and strong desire to deploy energy and water efficiency and renewable energy in Michigan.
Ranger Power is seeking an Assistant Development Manager to join its development team in its Chicago office. As part of a small and dynamic development team, assistant development managers are expected to manage varying responsibilities as projects progress through the development process. As a developer at Ranger Power, you will drive all aspects of project development and strategy, including site prospecting and land acquisition, site analysis, landowner relations, permitting, interconnection, business development, and community engagement and outreach.
Michigan and National Energy Events
The Michigan Chemistry Council and Ohio Chemistry Technology Council are co-hosting a complimentary webinar on March 29 aimed at assisting chemical and related manufacturers in understanding and implementing these commitments. This program will focus on trends in corporate sustainability goals and specific reporting platforms, the role of manufacturing sites and EHS functions in implementing these goals, and specific options to reduce carbon footprints (through efficiency and lower-carbon energy supplies) for Michigan and Ohio-based operations. Register here.
On July 12-14, PlugVolt will be hosting its next Battery Seminar in Plymouth, MI (USA) featuring an entire day of in-depth technical tutorials on solid-state batteries, next-gen anodes and cathodes, battery diagnostics, failures, battery management systems, etc. by world renowned professors from Top 50 US Universities. Attendees will also get an exclusive opportunity to tour INTERTEK Battery Testing Center of Excellence in Plymouth, MI (USA) firsthand, ask questions to resident experts, and enjoy some light appetizers and beverages while networking with industry peers. Register here.
The University of Michigan (U-M) is committed to achieving carbon neutrality for all Scope 2 emissions (purchased electricity) for the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses by 2025. To meet this goal, U-M seeks to procure 100 percent of purchased electricity from renewable (solar and/or wind) energy sources. U-M is seeking proposals for a Power Purchase Agreement or a Michigan Public Service Commission-regulated renewable electricity option. The RFP deadline is April 13. For more information contact Senior Procurement Agent William D. Erwin at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Indiana Michigan Power Company (I&M), via Charles River Associates (CRA) serving as the Independent Monitor, has released the 2022 All-Source RFP which seeks additional generation and capacity resources consistent with its 2021 IRP, including about 800 MW of wind, about 500 MW of solar and supplemental capacity resources. To view and download the RFP Documents, please navigate to the Documents section of the RFP website located at www.IMAllSourceRFP.com. Questions regarding this RFP should be emailed to I&M2022RFP@aep.com with cc to IMAllSourceRFP@CRAI.com. CRA will post a list of the non-confidential “Questions and Answers” to its website on a weekly basis following the issuance of the RFP until the Proposal Due Date. Proposals are due April 21.
To meet customer demand for the voluntary green pricing program (MIGreenPower), DTE is issuing an RFP for new wind and solar projects, both with and without energy storage. The projects must be ready to achieve commercial operation in 2023, be located in Michigan, and be interconnected to MISO or distribution level transmission. Anyone who is interested should register their company information on the Power Advocate website at this link for solar projects and/or this link for wind projects. DTE will be accepting proposals through April 29.
EGLE Energy Services is offering $250,000 in grants to small manufacturers in Michigan to implement energy efficiency activities that can be completed by Aug. 31, 2022, with a maximum grant for $25,000 per manufacturer. Application deadline is April 30.
American Electric Power (AEP) is issuing an RFP that “seeks up to 800 MW of Wind resources, 500 MW of Solar resources, and other qualified capacity resources from thermal, standalone storage, emerging technologies, and other capacity resources.” AEP subsidiary Indiana Michigan Power identified the need for supply-side generation in its RFP. Consumers Energy has released draft materials for its RFP that will solicit solar and wind generation projects in accordance with the company’s expansion of its Voluntary Green Pricing Program. This RFP will be administered by Enel X, affiliated with Michigan EIBC member Enel Green Power. According to the RFP administrator, “questions pertaining to this RFP or the proposal submittal process can be sent via email to Enel X by way of VGPRFP@enel.com. In the event others within your organization did not receive this notice and are interested in being added to the RFP listserv, please send a request via email to VGPRFP@enel.com with contact details for those to be added.” Final proposals are due May 31.
The Community Collaboration on Climate Change (C4) is seeking a full-time contract position to provide coordination of C4 leadership, organizational representatives, Grand Rapids residents, and the program deliverables. State of Michigan DNR is going big in solar with projects in the ground, others in development and additional ones being planned. DNR has released a Request for Proposal for Prequalification Program for Renewable Energy PPAs: www.michigan.gov/sigmavss. Use “Guest Access” to get the RFP. A previous round of pre-qualifications netted solar companies that then were able to bid on a portfolio of DNR solar projects in Southwest Michigan. Another portfolio in the Northern Region is in the works for later this year. Only companies who pre-qualify can bid on future DNR solar projects. Please direct all correspondence to the Solicitation Manager, Laura Gyorkos at gyorkosL@michigan.gov.
The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s PlanetM Testing Grant gives mobility companies the opportunity to access testing facilities around the state, including Mcity at the University of Michigan. Apply here.