My colleague Graham Noyes and Clayton McMartin of Clean Fuels Clearinghouse recently published a white paper on the massive and staggeringly complex revision of the federal Advanced Fuel Standard (RFS) issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on February 3, 2010. Graham and Clayton describe how this second generation renewable fuel initiative (RFS2) will bring industry and government together in ways never before experienced by the fuels industry.
With a view to helping market participants develop comprehensive cost/benefit and compliance strategies, Graham and Clayton structure their discussion according to the following key topics:
- Legal background and new statutory requirements of RFS2;
- Compliance implications of updates to the Renewable Identification Numbers (“RINS”) process; and
- Issues important to particular market participants, including producer obligations, new fuel pathways, importer issues and RIN trading economics.
Yesterday, the Department of Energy (“DOE”) announced more than $154 million in Recovery Act funding to four states for their State Energy Programs (“SEPs”). The funds were awarded to California, Missouri, New Hampshire, and North Carolina. The funding is to be provided in two stages to the four states with the second stage requiring successful performance at the first level. The funding is to be utilized in the areas of energy efficiency, workforce training, education and related programs.
California will use its SEP funds to finance a statewide retrofit program, provide clean energy to buildings and facilities, and develop a public education and outreach program focusing on the advantages of energy efficiency. In addition, California will use its SEP funds to further develop a green workforce in the areas of energy efficiency and clean energy. After demonstrating success in the execution of its plan, California will receive additional funds of more than $113 million, for a total of $226 million.
Missouri will use its SEP funds to increase energy efficiency through various measures, including the expansion of existing home efficiency programs, building energy codes, and training programs. Missouri will also examine its most energy-intensive industrial/manufacturing sectors for energy-saving opportunities and will increase energy efficiency through a program that may include energy audits, rebates, and low-interest loans. After demonstrating success in the execution of its plan, Missouri will receive more than $28.6 million of additional funds, for a total of over $57 million.
New Hampshire will use its SEP funds to advance energy efficiency and renewable energy through building codes, competitive loans and grants, and financial and technical assistance to businesses and other institutions. New Hampshire will also support energy efficiency upgrades to colleges, universities, and state-owned buildings. After demonstrating success in the execution of its plan, New Hampshire will receive more than $12 million of additional funds, for a total of over $25.8 million.
North Carolina will use its SEP funds to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy through competitive grants, revolving loans, and education and training programs designed to encourage investment in energy-related technologies. The state will also establish a training program in its community colleges and universities to prepare workers for the green economy. After demonstrating success in the execution of its plan, North Carolina will receive $38 million of additional funds, for a total of $76 million.