Times, they are EE-changin’… at AESP’s Summer Conference
August 2, 2017 - “Keeping track of all the changes impacting the energy industry feels a lot like herding cats,” say organizers of Association of Energy Services Professionals’ Summer Conference, “But you do need to corral them (the changes, not the cats!) if only to understand the profound transformation coming to utilities and the new business models that are emerging in response to these opportunities and challenges.”
By Anthony Capkun
AESP is hosting its Summer Conference “Times, they are EE-changin” at the Sheraton Centre Toronto (Queen West) August 29-31, 2017, with the aim of doing the “cat-herding” for you! Here’s a not-so sneaky peek at some of the sessions that caught our eye:
Learning to SEE… Sell Efficiency Effectively, that is!
Many decisions are emotional, and making the commitment to dedicate time and resources to enhance efficiency is no exception. Whether you are selling efficiency solutions or seeking project approvals, understanding the factors that play a role in the decision-making process—and knowing how to build rapport with key stakeholders—vastly increase your chance of success.
Led by trainer Mark Jewell of Selling Energy, this workshop features highlights from the week-long Efficiency Sales Professional (ESP) Boot Camp. Essentially, this workshop promises to provide the insight, focus and skills you need to define your most promising targets, streamline your sales process and maximize your closing ratio.
Indoor cannabis production: the next efficiency opportunity
Legalized medical and recreational cannabis production is a reality. During this session, speakers John Morris (D+R International) and Derek Smith (Resource Innovation Institute) will highlight what utilities can do to address the unique needs of cannabis producers.
They will also help you identify education and outreach strategies to growers, how to right-size systems for new growers coming online, and provide examples of sound building science principles for indoor grow facilities.
Strategic funding for embedded energy manager programs
Since the launch of various Energy Manager programs in 2011, Ontario has become a leader in leveraging customer-embedded energy specialists to drive the adoption of strategic energy management principles, fast-tracking energy-saving projects and increasing participation in existing DSM programs.
However, speaker Carrie Aloussis (Independent Electricity System Operator, IESO) argues that providing customer incentives alone to hire energy managers won’t yield the desired program results.
In fact, funding for Energy Manager programs should be balanced between customer incentives and funding for dedicated training and support. Attend this session to hear “the untold stories from Ontario’s energy managers as they describe the challenging realities of succeeding as newly hired energy managers, where the technology issues seem easier than the people issues”.
A battery of choices, but what does it mean?
Energy storage continues to capture headlines. Naturally, utilities want to know how storage investments can provide value, how to get started, and what to ask of vendors.
Studies cited by the Energy Storage Association show that battery energy storage systems easily compete in power-system markets for ancillary services. Meantime, a Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) can respond as much as 100x faster to grid operator signals than power turbine generators.
Led by Christian Rawson (Honeywell), this session will look at stacking multiple services effectively and efficiently by mixing and matching value streams to maximize profit from storage investment.
Integrating measurement & verification into projects
M&V (measurement & verification) of actual energy reductions should be taken to a new level, suggests session speaker Jeff Perkins (ERS). Fortunately, the Internet of Things (IoT) is allowing us to get “more intimate” with our buildings, keeping in mind that what works for residential may not work for commercial.
Using off-the-shelf devices, we could be gathering building data broadly and completely for every efficiency retrofit completed. Not only does this serve evaluators but everyone, from system planners and project developers to customers. Perkins will also discuss examples of smart data-gathering that will help you better evaluate and tune efficiency programs, and deliver assured capacity reductions.
Pay-for-performance incentives using performance-based rebates
Custom-calculated efficiency rebate programs can create savings uncertainty for energy efficiency program administrators, suggests Valerie Eacret (ERS). Because rebates are typically paid based on first-year annual savings, awarded incentives for efficiency projects may be well over or under estimated lifetime project savings.
For example, data centres may not be fully loaded until years after construction, resulting in unrealized savings from implemented measures. As such, reducing uncertainty improves program performance and has the potential to spread limited rebate funds across more customer projects.
Pay-for-performance programs have been tested and successfully address all of these concerns; the solution, essentially, is rebate payments spread over multiple years based on the results of periodic commissioning reports and measured data.
Do advanced lighting controls make sense now… for all?
Safdar Chaudhry (Richard Heath & Assoc.) and Dario Moreno (Southern California Edison Co.) will provide an overview of SCE’s Advanced Lighting Control System (ALCS) pilot program, and discuss results and lessons learned.
In short, several SCE research projects have resulted in savings of 60% to 90%. ALCSs did provide some savings, but the lion’s share was due to the replacement of HID or fluorescent fixtures with LEDs.
During this discussion, the speakers will argue the installation costs for LED fixtures and control retrofits are a definite roadblock to widespread acceptance, meaning generous incentives must be taken into consideration. Also, the data acquisition and analyses of ALCS projects and validation of control software results are not without their challenges.
THERE is so much more to AESP’s Summer Conference 2017, but it’s best you download the agenda (below) and see for yourself.
IMPORTANT! Early registration rates and the “3 Member Special” expire August 7, 2017, which is less than a week away. Rates increase $100 afterward.