WV Citizen Action Group
Action Alert

August 29
 Alert Archive


Support Energy Efficiency in West Virginia's 5-year Energy Plan

Be sure to attend a public hearing or submit written comments by September 7, 2012.

The WV Division of Energy's 5-Year Energy Plan was released last week. You can download the sections of the draft report ("Fossil Energy Opportunities", "Energy Efficiency Policy Outlook", and "Renewable Energy Policy Outlook") here.

There will be public hearings next week in Huntington, Morgantown, and Martinsburg. Details about time and locations are here. You can register in advance to speak at a meeting here.

Public comments can also be submitted via e-mail to EnergyPlanComments@wv.gov or online at http://www.wvcommerce.org/energy/energyplan/process/submit-comments/default.aspx.

We were pleased to see that the energy efficiency section of the report strongly endorses an Energy Efficiency Resource Standard for West Virginia and the adoption of up-to-date building energy codes, both policies that Energy Efficient West Virginia advocates for. The plan did not discuss least-cost planning as a means of keeping rising electric rates in check or as a means of promoting energy efficiency.

Please come to a public hearing or submit a public comment in support of energy efficiency and least-cost planning. Below are some sample talking points.

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

Stacy Gloss
Energy Efficient West Virginia

Talking Points for the WV Division of Energy State Energy Plan 2013-2017

  • I strongly endorse all of the recommendations of the Energy Efficiency section of the proposed West Virginia State Energy Plan.

  • Specifically, I support the idea of an Energy Efficiency Resource Standard (EERS) to set long-term goals in energy savings. I agree that such a policy would spur greater utility investment in efficiency, would ensure a long-term market in energy efficiency services, and reinforce the concept of energy efficiency as a resource.

  • Energy efficiency is a low-cost and underutilized resource for West Virginia. Utility-funded energy efficiency programs in WV are weaker than many programs in surrounding states, including programs offered by other AEP and FirstEnergy companies.

  • I urge the Plan to recommend integrated resource planning as a strategy to ensure utilities invest in all cost-effective energy efficiency and ensure that our utilities are making investment decisions in the long-term public interest. IRP has been adopted by more than half of the United States and would require our utilities to submit long-term plans explaining how they will best meet future electric demand at the lowest cost.

  • IRP would evaluate supply-side and demand-side resources, such as energy efficiency, on an equal footing and would show how much utilities should invest in energy efficiency as a resource.

  • The Division of Energy should support transparent evaluation of all energy alternatives including gas plants, coal plants, renewable energy, co-generation and demand-side resources such as energy efficiency, conservation and demand response to meet the electric capacity needs of our state.

  • I am disappointed that the Energy Plan did not include any policy recommendations to support the development of co-generation, or combined heat and power. There is potential for significant improvements in efficiency by capturing waste heat from industrial processes to create electricity. Other states have much stronger policies in place to allow co-generation facilities a long-term contract for their electricity production.

  • The Division of Energy’s decision to commission this report in three separate parts by Marshall University and West Virginia University demonstrates that West Virginia does not yet value the potential of integrated resource planning. It also means that resource options like co-generation (combined heat and power) fall through the cracks.

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Wellness & Water: Health Impacts of Fossil Fuel Extraction ~ Sept. 8 in Morgantown

Join us in Morgantown on September 8 to hear about the human health impacts of mountaintop removal coal mining and shale gas drilling and fracking. Meet with impacted residents and experts including: keynote speaker, environmental scientist Dr. Wilma Subra (see Wilma's bio below); Dr. Ben Stout, Aquatic Biologist at Wheeling Jesuit University; Dr. Jill Kriesky, Senior Project Coordinator for the Center for Healthy Environments and Communities at the University of Pittsburgh; and Dr. Michael Hendryx, Professor at the West Virginia University School of Public Health, whose research is shining a much-needed light on these health impacts.

WHAT: Wellness & Water: Workshops and Panel Discussions on the Health Impacts of Fossil Fuel Extraction

WHEN: September 8, 2012

WHERE: First Presbyterian Church, 456 Spruce Street, Morgantown, WV (click here for map and directions)

—Register now online at www.ohvec.org

—Day-of registration begins at 8:00 a.m. Coffee and tea available.

—Keynote at 9:00 a.m.

—Closing reception at 1:00 p.m. Finger food available.

$10 suggested donation to help with the cost of the program and snacks.

About the Keynote Speaker — Wilma Subra
Wilma graduated from the University of Southwestern Louisiana and the University of Louisiana at Lafayette in Microbiology, Chemistry and Computer Sciences. Committed to protecting the environment and the health and safety of citizens, in 1981 Wilma started Subra Company, a chemistry lab and environmental consulting firm in New Iberia, LA. Wilma worked for the Gulf South Research Institute and served as vice-chair of the EPA National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology. Wilma serves on the boards of Earthworks and STRONGER (State Review of Oil and Gas Environmental Regulations) and was featured in the documentary film Gasland. She has received numerous awards and recognitions, including the MacArthur Foundation's Fellowship "Genius Award" for helping citizens understand, cope with and combat environmental issues in their communities.

CONTACT: Robin Blakeman at robin@ohvec.org or 304-522-0246 for more information. (click here to view/download flyer)

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