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BCSE In Action

BCSE Quarterly Connection: Summer 2018

In this issue:

President’s View: New Federal Climate Policies Emerge

July has seen a resurgence of attention to federal climate change policy and carbon pricing – with energy efficiency, natural gas and renewable energy technologies at the center of the solution set.  With the introduction of a carbon tax bill in the House of Representatives, the Market Choice Act, by Congressman Carlos Curbelo (R-FL), and the launch of coalitions focused on elevating federal policy responses to both greenhouse gas reduction and enhancing resilience from natural disasters, new political coalitions are emerging.  This provides significant opportunities for the Council to shape policies to ensure that initiatives cost-effectively reduce emissions and help communities prepare for the impacts of climate change using the broad portfolio of clean energy technologies.  BCSE has long supported federal legislative action on an economy-wide, market-based approach to address climate change.  As new industries and stakeholders are coming to the table with ideas on policy and non-policy drivers to accelerate action, the Council’s history of crafting market-based programs is ready to share its expertise in this new round of action.

BCSE Communications Network Shares Top 5 Ways to Improve Your Communications

These days there are almost too many ways to connect with your clients, contacts and target audiences. Here are a few tips to consider doing what you already do, but just a little bit better, courtesy of the BCSE Communications Network.

  • E-mail subject lines with 29-39 characters get the best click through numbers; 4-15 characters get best open rate.
  • A/B test your content – try different times or subject lines for e-mails and different graphics and text for paid advertisements on social media.
  • Video. Video. Plus, a little humor every now and then on social media will boost your likes.
  • Make sure your website has a privacy policy and notification about cookies.
  • Get consent from your contacts to e-mail them, especially if they live in Europe.

The BCSE Communications Network has been spending its summer diving deep into a range of topics, including expanding digital media reach, effective emails campaigns, and managing data & privacy policies.  The above tips have emerged from this lunch & learn series, which will continue in the Fall.  For more information, please contact Laura Tierney (ltierney@bcse.org).

Hear the Chorus of Climate Action at Upcoming Global Climate Action Summit

San Francisco, California, will be hosting upwards of 50,000 people the week of September 10 at the Global Climate Action Summit.  The Summit will be accompanied by over 350 affiliate events that week, held by leaders from cities, states, businesses, and other stakeholders.  This includes events by the BCSE, the Alliance to Save Energy, PG&E Corporation, the U.S. Green Building Council, WRI’s Building Efficiency Accelerator and many more.  Details on these events will be made public by mid to late August.

The aim of the summit is to demonstrate a commitment to climate action by sub-national actors, and to pressure national governments to do more on climate change. The Summit, from September 12-14 is co-chaired by California Governor Jerry Brown, UNFCCC Executive Secretary Patricia Espinosa, UN Special Envoy Michael Bloomberg, Mahindra Group’s Anand Mahindra and China’s Climate Change Minister Xie Zhenhua.  The Summit will focus on five cross-cutting challenge areas: healthy energy systems, inclusive economic growth, sustainable communities, land and ocean stewardship, and transformative climate investments.  Find out the latest on the Summit website or contact Laura Tierney (ltierney@bcse.org) for more information.

BCSE Resilience and Reliability Dialogue Highlights Need for Education and Better Quantification of Benefits

Starting in May, the Council launched a strategic initiative on resilience and reliability.  The purpose of the initiative is to capture the breadth and scope of these important market drivers for BCSE industries and to share information gaps and policy ideas with decision-makers at the federal, state and local level. A member-only Thought Leaders Series began this spring with guest speakers from the National League of Cities, the National Governors Association, MIT, the Department of Energy as well as leading land management and national security experts.

Key take aways from these discussions have been that resilience and reliability are intertwined, but have distinct aspects.  Further, the conversations have highlighted the need for policymakers to be educated on the economic and human health benefits of pre-disaster and post-disaster resilience investments, and that better tools to quantify the

benefits are needed.  As this effort progresses, BCSE will release a coalition brief of this topic and will continue to advocate for federal legislation to enhance resilience and reliability.

Congress Considers Disaster Recovery Reform as 2018 Hurricane & Wildfire Seasons Begin

The partnership with BCSE and the National Association of State Energy Officials (NASEO) has been positive as the two organizations continue working together to advocate in support of disaster recovery reform and resilience provisions in various pieces of legislation.  BCSE and NASEO, along with BCSE members such as the US Green Building Council (USGBC), have been working to add the Senate version of the Disaster Recovery Reform Act (DRRA), S.3041, as an amendment to the FAA Reauthorization Bill, HR 4. The provisions in the DRRA represent a national focus on pre-disaster mitigation and response measures that - for the first time - will ensure the United States will be better prepared for disasters by advancing electric grids, power supplies and building stock that are reliable, more resilient, agile, cost effective, cyber-secure, and environmentally sound.

NARUC Events Provide Opportunity for Partnerships with Clean Energy Stakeholder Groups

BCSE members met with utility commissioners from the mid-Atlantic region at breakfast sessions held during the  June meeting of the Mid Atlantic Regulatory Utility Commissioners (MACRUC) in Hershey, Pennsylvania.  Members of the Clean Energy Business Network (CEBN) and GridWise Alliance joined the Council to share information and updates on our work, while commissioners from Ohio, New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, and the U.S. Virgin Islands addressed pressing topics from their states. In addition to the breakfast sessions, BCSE continued its very popular sponsorship of a photographer at the MACRUC President’s Installation Dinner. BCSE also co-sponsored a clean energy industry reception at the National Association of Regulatory Utilities Commissioners (NARUC) meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona, in July along with AEE, ACORE, AWEA, CERES, GridWise Alliance, and SEIA. 

Clean Air Subcommittee Tracks Carbon Pricing, EPA Developments

Over the past several weeks, the BCSE Clean Air Subcommittee has held meetings to learn more about the landscape of carbon pricing policies at the state level and what’s being proposed at the federal level. Dan Delurey, President of the Wedgemere Group, gave an overview of both the state policy landscape and the various groups working on carbon pricing. These include the Climate Leadership Council, the Citizens Climate Lobby, and others. Catrina Rorke of the Climate Leadership Council will speak at the next Clean Air meeting on August 6 about their carbon price proposal. The Council is also reviewing its climate change policy statement, with an eye toward updating the principles to reflect members’ current priorities.

BCSE and its members also continue to follow several regulations expected to be acted on by EPA in the coming weeks and months. As Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler begins his leadership of the EPA, many expect that the EPA’s agenda will remain largely unchanged, but that his approach will be different and more transparent than his predecessor. The administration’s proposed replacement for the Clean Power Plan is expected in the late summer or early fall, and the revised Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards could come as early as this week.

Conference Negotiations over Spending Bills and Farm Bill Programs Address Clean Energy

House and Senate conference negotiations continue over a three bill “minibus” that includes the Energy and Water Development, Veterans Affairs, Military Construction and Legislative Branch Appropriations Bills. Congress is hopeful the “minibus” will be signed into law before the end of the current fiscal year in September. Appropriators were able to address a shortfall for veterans’ health care which made progress on the rest of the bill possible.  BCSE has weighed in with conferees regarding our funding priorities for the Department of Energy in the three bill “minibus.” BCSE has also weighed in on a second, four bill “minibus,” which includes funding for the Environmental Protection Agency, along with other agencies. That bill is expected to be passed by the Senate before the August Recess and go to conference in September. Funding levels for BCSE priorities in both “mini-buses” are positive.
 
In addition to the funding bills, the House and Senate are going to conference to reauthorize the Farm Bill this summer. BCSE has been advocating in support of rural energy programs and for the continuation of modest, cost-effective investment.  Farm Bill energy title programs provide the means for agriculture-based entrepreneurs to launch initiatives to generate jobs and economic development – from wind, geothermal, hydro and solar power, to biogas and advanced biofuels, to biopower, bio-based products, renewable chemicals, and energy efficiency.  The energy title has enabled farmers, ranchers, and rural small businesses to become more self-sufficient, and bring high-value products to market.

New Member Spotlight:
Capital Power

BCSE recently welcomed a new member to the coalition: Capital Power. Capital Power Corporation is an independent power generation company based in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. Capital Power develops, acquires, and operates power generation from a variety of energy sources, including natural gas and wind, in Canada and the United States.

Clean Energy Business Network's Faces Behind the Facts

 The Clean Energy Business Network released 5 new profiles in July for the ongoing Faces Behind the Facts series, which tells the stories of business leaders behind the trends in the 2018 Sustainable Energy in America Factbook. Learn how BioJoe and Beth Renwick grew one of the southeast’s leading biodiesel companies out of their garage, Matthew Goss went from pit crew member to energy consultant, and Jim Newman became the “Dean of Green.” See these fresh new faces.

Featured Event: National Clean Energy Week

Washington, DC - September 24-28
The BCSE is pleased to announce this year’s National Clean Energy Week (NCEW) will take place in Washington, DC, during the week of September 24. The second annual NCEW will include a full day symposium, associated dinners, a young professionals reception, and more.

For additional details and the full schedule, please visit www.nationalcleanenergyweek.org.