Author Archive: KaibaWhite

Solar Austin Happy Hour – Learn the Latest at Austin Energy!

We invite you to join us at the Chapel Stage at Spider House on Wednesday, February 20th at 6:30 pm to meet Deborah Kimberly, Austin Energy’s new VP of Distributed Energy Services, and get an update on Austin Energy’s solar programs from Lesley Libby, the Solar Program Manager.  Please RSVP.

SPEAKERS:

Deborah KimberlyDeborah Kimberly

As of January 22, Ms. Kimberly is the new VP of Distributed Energy Services at Austin Energy.  Prior to that, she was the Director of the energy efficiency and marketing groups for Salt River Project (SRP), the third largest public power electric utility in the country, based in Tempe, Arizona.  Since 1982 Ms. Kimberly had served in many capacities at SRP including analyst, manager of financial planning, special projects manager, manager of financial services, manager of energy efficiency and policy analysis and director of customer programs and marketing.  As Director of the energy efficiency and marketing groups, her responsibilities included energy efficiency product design and implementation, marketing of all SRP products, price plans and services, corporate events management, measurement and evaluation, and customer and market research.

At Austin Energy, Kimberly will oversee the utility’s energy efficiency and load management programs, including Energy Efficiency Services, Green Building, Solar Programs, Emerging Technologies, Key Accounts, and Data Analytics and Business Intelligence.

Leslie LibbyLeslie Libby

Ms. Libby is the Solar Program Manager at Austin Energy.   She graduated from Montana State University in 1984 with a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering. In December 1992, she graduated with a M.S. in Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. From May 1991 to the present, she has been employed by Austin Energy. Leslie has managed Austin Energy’s solar incentive programs from it’s inception in 2004.

From 2004 until the present, Austin Energy has provided customers with $30 million in incentives which has allowed 1900 participants to install 7 MW of solar on their rooftops. Austin Energy’s latest achievement is the creation of an innovative “Residential Solar Rate.” This rate compensates customers who have invested in local, distributed solar for the value these resources provide the utility. This rate has been nationally recognized by Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA) and most recently by the Interstate Renewable Energy Council (IREC).

We hope you hope you’ll join us to hear from both of these great speakers!  Happy hour starts at 6:30 pm and the program will start at 7:00 pm. 

We need you to stand up for solar on December 19th!

We need you to stand up and demand better clean energy policy on December 19th! The Texas Sunset Advisory Commission is holding a hearing on the effectiveness of the Public Utility Commission (PUC).

We need to use this opportunity to push for better policies for clean energy.  The PUC has once again refused to implement the non-wind renewable portfolio standard without any public discussion.  Let the Sunset Advisory Commission know that you are displeased with the PUC’s refusal to implement the law.

We also need to push for a statewide net metering policy.  Many electric customers outside of Austin and San Antonio don’t receive any credit on their electric bills for the energy that they push out to the grid when they are producing more than they are using.  This unfair and provides a disincentive for installing distributed systems in many areas.  We need to start pushing for a statewide net metering policy now.

We need solar advocates like you to make your voices heard!

Sign up now to attend: www.CleanEnergyWorksForTexas.org.

Even if you don’t wish to speak at the hearing, your presence would still be a good show of support.

Rally for Clean Energy and Good Jobs – Thursday, October 18 at Noon

We are taking our Clean Energy Works for Texas campaign to the doorstep of the Public Utility Commission (PUC) this week. 

We hope you will join us for a rally on Thursday, October 18 at 12 p.m. in front of the William B. Travis building at 1701 N. Congress Avenue, Austin, TX 78701

We are urging the PUC to create rules to enforce and expand the non-wind renewable portfolio standard (RPS). Passed into law in 2005, the non-wind RPS has languished at the PUC, thanks to pressure from certain lobby interests not to enforce the law. 7 years is too long to wait.

The PUC needs to hear that the people of Texas are ready to get to work building 21st century energy economies. With more solar potential than any other state, Texas has an opportunity to grow our economy. Our workers should be supplying solar panels, inverters and other equipment to the rest of the country and the world. Enforcing the non-wind renewable portfolio standard will send a message to investors that Texas is open for business.

To RSVP and see updates about the rally, find us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/events/186701511465498/) or Eventbrite (http://rallyforcleanenergyandgoodjobs.eventbrite.com).

For more information on the campaign and to sign on in support, visit www.CleanEnergyWorksForTexas.org.

Contact kwhite@citizen.org with any questions.

Clean Energy Works for Texas – Take Action Now

Solar Austin has partnered with a growing coalition of organizations and businesses on the Clean Energy Works for Texas campaign.  The coalition has filed a petition at the Public Utility Commission (PUC) requesting a rulemaking to enforce and expand the non-wind renewable portfolio standard (RPS).

The non-wind RPS was passed into law by the Texas Legislature in 2005, but has yet to be enforced, thanks to anti-renewable energy lobbyist pressure on the PUC.  The Texas RPS has been quite successful in driving wind energy industry growth in the state, but has failed to do the same for solar, geothermal and other renewable energy industries.  If enforced, the non-wind RPS would create a market for electricity from these other renewable energy sources.

Ask the PUC to implement the law and send a positive signal to clean energy investors.

The RPS is not a subsidy.  It does not provide payments or tax breaks to electricity producers.  It simply requires all private, investor owned utilities (i.e. TXU or Reliant) to purchase a small portion of the electricity that they sell from solar or other non-wind renewable energy producers.

With solar prices considerably lower than they were just a few short years ago and our electric grid regulators struggling to find enough electric generation capacity to meet our needs, now is the time for our state to embrace solar energy.  Solar photovoltaic (PV) panels produce the most energy at the same time of day that people are using the most electricity and, according to a recent study by the Brattle Group, consumers could actually be saving money if we had more solar PV in our energy mix.

We hope you will join us in this effort by sending an email to the PUC.

Renewable Energy Round-Up & Green Living Fair Wet, but Successful

Thank you to everyone who stopped by our booth at the Renewable Energy Roundup & Green Living Fair this weekend.  We were pleased to have the opportunity to speak to some new solar supporters and get the word out about the Clean Energy Works for Texas campaign.  While the rain discouraged many from attending, it gave us a good excuse to take cover under our tent and talk with those who were there about the future of solar energy in Texas.