California To Go All-In on LEDs

Read the full story at FutureStructure.

The Sacramento-based California Energy Commission is pondering energy-efficient lighting standards that, if approved, would establish LED bulbs as a statewide staple and consign some forms of track lighting to history’s discard pile.

Clean Energy Manufacturing and Process Intensification Technology Assessments Available for Download

Two new technology assessment reports from The 2015 Quadrennial Technology Review (QTR) are now available.

Advanced Sensors, Controls, Platforms and Modeling for Manufacturing – 6C
Advanced Sensors, Controls, Platforms and Modeling for Manufacturing is one of fourteen manufacturing-focused technology assessments prepared in support of Chapter 6: Innovating Clean Energy Technologies in Advanced Manufacturing.

Process Intensification – 6J
Process Intensification is one of fourteen manufacturing-focused technology assessments prepared in support of Chapter 6: Innovating Clean Energy Technologies in Advanced Manufacturing.

Webinar: Learning from the Past to Inform Future Work: Trends in Behavior‐ Based Efficiency Programs

Wed, Dec 16, 2015 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM CST
Register at

Best of BECC – Join us for one of the presentations from the 2015 Behavior, Energy and Climate Change Conference that attendees think is worth repeating!

The energy efficiency industry has increasingly recognized the potential of social science knowledge to expand the scope of program possibilities and tap into new energy saving opportunities. In order to help program administrators leverage these opportunities, the Consortium for Energy Efficiency has collected information from its membership for each of the past four years on the behavior-based programs currently underway and how these programs are being evaluated.

This presentation will describe this annual data collection effort and highlight the key findings of this research to date. Results discussed will consider the social science knowledge most commonly incorporated into the programs captured, as well as methods used for program evaluation and overarching lessons learned from the program administrator community. This presentation aims to shed light on current program activity, offer initial observations on emerging trends in behavior-based programs, and illustrate some promising approaches to achieving quantifiable energy efficiency savings using social science insights.

Presenter: Claire McIlvennie, CEE

Hosted by: Michael Li, U.S. Department of Energy

The energy and emissions footprint of water supply for Southern California

A J Fang, Joshua P Newell, and Joshua J Cousins (2015). “The energy and emissions footprint of water supply for Southern California.” Environmental Research Letters 10(11), 11 p. Online at Open access.

Abstract: Due to climate change and ongoing drought, California and much of the American West face critical water supply challenges. California’s water supply infrastructure sprawls for thousands of miles, from the Colorado River to the Sacramento Delta. Bringing water to growing urban centers in Southern California is especially energy intensive, pushing local utilities to balance water security with factors such as the cost and carbon footprint of the various supply sources. To enhance water security, cities are expanding efforts to increase local water supply. But do these local sources have a smaller carbon footprint than imported sources? To answer this question and others related to the urban water–energy nexus, this study uses spatially explicit life cycle assessment to estimate the energy and emissions intensity of water supply for two utilities in Southern California: Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, which serves Los Angeles, and the Inland Empire Utility Agency, which serves the San Bernardino region. This study differs from previous research in two significant ways: (1) emissions factors are based not on regional averages but on the specific electric utility and generation sources supplying energy throughout transport, treatment, and distribution phases of the water supply chain; (2) upstream (non-combustion) emissions associated with the energy sources are included. This approach reveals that in case of water supply to Los Angeles, local recycled water has a higher carbon footprint than water imported from the Colorado River. In addition, by excluding upstream emissions, the carbon footprint of water supply is potentially underestimated by up to 30%. These results have wide-ranging implications for how carbon footprints are traditionally calculated at local and regional levels. Reducing the emissions intensity of local water supply hinges on transitioning the energy used to treat and distribute water away from fossil fuel, sources such as coal.

Climate Through A Different Lens: Poverty, Inequality, Sustainability

Read the full post from Columbia University’s Earth Institute.

The COP discussions have revolved around targets for decarbonization to mitigate climate change. I think this needs to be a discussion about how the development of a renewable energy platform can lead to sustainable and inclusive economic growth of all sectors of society in the world. Uplifting the poor, while a moral imperative, may not actually translate beyond political slogans. Perhaps, this is why the debates are not framed in this light. The 20th century showed us that the rich get richer as the poor are uplifted. Let the 21st be about how to improve conditions for all living beings on the planet.

Ribbon-cutting for UI’s ‘solar farm’ set for this morning

Read the full story in the Champaign-Urbana News-Gazette.

A solar installation three years in the making is up and running at the University of Illinois, with an official ribbon-cutting and public tours scheduled this morning.

Three Student Winners Selected for IAC Video Contest

The Industrial Assessment Centers program, administered through the Advanced Manufacturing Office, recently selected two winners, and one honorable mention for creativity, from its student video contest held earlier this summer. Students were asked to create a five minute instructional video that identified industrial energy efficiency system improvements and opportunities.

The student winners hailed from Tennessee Technological University, Syracuse University, and the University of Idaho Boise.

Click here to view the winning student videos.