Jennifer Ronk presented at the Agricultural Sustainable Energy Education Network (ASEEN) Program: Teacher Professional Development Summer Workshop on June 13, 2014.
City of Houston Solar Energy Projects
HARC has worked with the City of Houston on a wide range of solar energy projects. Through its partnership with the City of Houston, HARC helped the City demonstrate leadership in clean energy and environmental performance.
Solar energy projects have included:
Department of Energy Solar America Cities Program
The U.S. Department of Energy named Houston as one of the 25 U.S. Solar America Cities working to accelerate the adoption of solar energy technologies for a cleaner, more secure energy future. Through the Solar America Cities effort, the DOE is working to rapidly increase the use and integration of solar energy in communities across the country. This program focused on a stakeholder-driven process to identify barriers and solutions to solar energy in the area, that resulted in an action plan to address these barriers.
DOE Sunshot Initiative Rooftop Solar Challenge
After the Solar America Cities Program, the DOE created the Sunshot Initiative Rooftop Challenge grant to tackle the twin challenges of reducing non-hardware costs and reducing market barriers. For this opportunity, San Antonio, Austin, and Houston teamed up, and are partnering with relevant stakeholders to make changes to improve market conditions for rooftop PV. The Challenge focused specifically on rooftop PV in the residential and commercial sectors, and emphasized streamlined and standardized permitting and interconnection processes. One of the tasks under this project is to provide information to homeowners, builders, and others on best practices related to best managing installations on historic homes and on homes affected by homeowner associations.
ICMA Podcast with Jennifer Ronk: http://icma.org/en/icma/newsroom/podcasts/Article/101953/Houston_Solar_America_Cities
Solar in Action: Houston Texas: http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy12osti/51051.pdf
George R. Brown Solar Demonstration Project
At the time of installation, the George R. Brown PV system was the largest commercial solar demonstration project in Houston. Primary funding for the George R. Brown Solar Pilot
Program was provided by the Houston Architecture Foundation through the support of the Houston Endowment, Inc. Additional project funding was provided by BP and CenterPoint Energy.
The turn-key installation included the design, installation, and commissioning of one 51.3-kW DC crystalline module array and a 49-kW DC amorphous thin-film system. along with a publicly
displayed educational kiosk illustrating how solar energy is converted into electricity and providing real-time energy production data.
1002 Washington Renewable Energy Demonstration Project
The City of Houston converted a 190,000 square foot, former warehouse, built in 1924, to a multi-department office building that serves as the City of Houston's One Stop Permitting Center and Green Building Resource Center. This project, funded by the State Energy Conservation Office, included the installation of four 1.5 kW wind turbines, the installation of a 100.72 kW DTSC Monocrystalline PV System, a 6.1 kW DTSC polycrystalline PV system, and the re-location of forty 165 Watt polycrystalline PV panels from the lod permitting building to the new location. An educational kiosk that provides information on renewable energy produced and building energy use was also designed and installed. Finally, HARC wrote an iPhone app that can report building energy use.
City of Houston Press Release: http://www.houstontx.gov/mayor/press/20120427.html
Emergency Mobile Solar Generators
With funding from the State Energy Conservation Office, HARC coordinated the purchase and deployment of 17 emergency mobile solar generators Solar Powered Adaptive Container for Everyone (SPACE) units to be used as backup power in the case of an extended power outage. They were sized and designed to power emergency communication equipment, recharge wheelchair batteries and oxygen nebulizers, along with being equipped with small energy-efficient refrigerators in case of a need to refrigerate medicine.
Gavin Dillingham and Jennifer Ronk participated in the development of the 2014 Standardization Roadmap: Energy Efficiency in the Built Environment report publicized by EESCC of the American National Standards Institute.
Gavin Dillingham, Research Scientist, Clean Energy Policy, paper, "Explaining the Diffusion of the Energy Efficiency Resource Standard (EERS) Across States", will be published in the 2014 American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy Summer Study on Energy Economy in Buildings.
In partnership with the Texas State Energy Conservation Office (SECO), HARC is launching the Department of Energy’s State Energy Program Texas Industrial Energy Efficiency and Combined Heat and Power (CHP) grant.