Just In! for March 11, 2023

The weekly newsletter of the New York Geothermal Energy Organization (NY-GEO)

Just In! is NY-GEO's weekly news feed for members. NY-GEO's calendar-year memberships are open to everyone and available for as little as $35. See more information on memberships here. If we send you a complementary copy and you're not a member of NY-GEO, it means we value your role in the transition to renewable heating, but without a membership, please don't count on getting Just In! weekly.

Industry Updates:

Howard County, MD Becomes 100th US Community to Pass an Electrification Policy – “The Howard County Council voted 4-1 yesterday to begin the process of ending the use of fossil fuels in almost all newly constructed buildings, continuing the momentum created by Montgomery County and Washington, D.C in 2022.  As a result, one in five Marylanders now live in a community whose elected officials are envisioning electrifying all new buildings, moving to protect their constituents’ public health and fulfill the state’s climate goals.” Thanks to Doug Siglin of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network for this tip. Full article here. Click on the pic below for an 80-scond video on the significance of Howard County’s action. 

Geothermal 11 Storey Condo in Scarborough, Ontario – Diverso Energy -  “This dynamic geothermal system at Merge Condos eliminates the need for traditional gas boilers and rooftop cooling towers, thereby resulting in reduced operating costs and a considerable reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.  How much, you may ask?  The equivalent of 40 cars being removed off the road! Beyond the intended function, clients like LCH Developments receive a practical and effective way to future-proof their building against low-carbon policies, carbon tax, and riding the wave of double-digit inflation on maintenance costs.  The system provides cost certainty for the life of the building, which in turn hedges the risk of potential energy and maintenance increases.” Web page on the Merge project here.


Lefton Joins Foley Hoag, LLP - “Amanda Lefton, a national leader in the renewable energy and sustainable infrastructure field and former Director of the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), has joined the firm (of Foley Hoag) as Senior Policy Director. Leveraging her experience in energy and environmental programs at the state and federal levels, Amanda will work with the firm’s clients in the renewable energy, climate solutions and environmental practices, as a member of the firm’s Energy & Climate group.“ Prior to serving as the Director for BOEM, Ms. Lefton previously served as the First Assistant Secretary for Energy and Environment for the Governor of New York where she led the State’s climate and environmental initiatives and managed a portfolio of twelve agencies and authorities. NY-GEO’s board is happy to announce that Foley Hoag provides legal and advisory services to NY-GEO as a pro bono client.

Amanda Lefton

 


 

Briefing on Fossil Fuel Disinformation - hosted by Senators Liz Kreuger and Pete Harckham - Climate Action Council members Bob Howarth and Raya Salter give their perspective on fossil-fuel industry scare tactics being used to create opposition to NY’s Climate Action Plan. Thanks to Marcelo Gonzalez, Communications Associate, Building Electrification for this tip  Google Drive here. To push back against fossil-fuel tactics click here to see Renewable Heat Now’s Virtual Advocacy Toolkit.


Gas Utilities Press Customers to Oppose Climate Plan – Colin Kinniburgh – NY Focus - “Robocalls from National Fuel, a gas utility based outside of Buffalo, opposing the phaseout of new natural gas hookups is just one of a variety of strategies the fossil fuel industry has employed in its mounting offensive against climate action.”  (from 2023 03 08 – City & State First Read) Full article here.

Geothermal for NY State’s Largest Networks of Buildings? – Susan Arbetter – Capital Tonight – “Upgrade NY (upgradeny.org) is comprised of groups including the New York League of Conservation Voters (NYLCV), Align, the Sierra Club, WE Act, the AFL-CIO and the pipefitters union.  The coalition wants lawmakers to dedicate $115 million in funding to prepare 15 shovel-ready thermal energy networks (TENs) by 2025. The networks could include most of the state’s SUNY campuses, the Harriman Office Campus in Albany and the Empire State Plaza, among others. ‘Thermal energy networks actually allow the very skills of people that build-out these systems using fossil fuels, but to use TENS,’ said John Murphy, International Representative for the United Association. ‘We have the training infrastructure and all we need is the pipeline of work and we can start to serve those underserved communities.’” Thanks to NY_GEO member Paul Coons for this tip. Link to article and video segment here.

Zapping Electrification Myths – In a blog, Rewiring America has taken on 4 myths currently being used to slow implementation of building decarbonization. “With the Inflation Reduction Act incentives making electrification more affordable than ever, the opposing fossil fuel powers-that-be are running low on valid arguments against electrification… We’re seeing a significant spike in misinformation. So, let’s tackle four of the most common myths and how to respond if you find yourself in a battle of watts.” Blog page here.

 

 

Electric Water Heaters as Grid Batteries – Jeff St. John – Canary Media – “Shifted Energy is tapping water heaters in lower-income communities to create virtual power plants that help balance the grid, starting in Hawaii. As of last year, Shifted Energy had equipped more than 3,000 households in multifamily condos and apartment buildings on the islands of Oahu and Maui with its cellular-connected smart-water-heater control modules. Those families earn about $3 a month in utility bill credits for allowing Shifted Energy to turn those water heaters on and off to help balance the grid during sudden shifts in wind and solar power supply. This virtual power plant (VPP) offers the utility a collective capacity of up to 2.5 megawatts of fast-responding grid support. Full article here.


Illinois Bans the Bans – Dan Gearino, Aydali Campa - Inside Climate News – “After 15 Illinois counties passed severe restrictions on renewable energy development, the state passed a law that essentially bans the bans.  …officials from the affected counties are livid about what they view as a power grab by majority Democrats... But supporters of the law say they had little choice but to take action because local governments have relied on misleading or false information about the safety and economics of renewable energy to pass rules that are not in the public interest.” Article link here.

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzger

 


Electrification Won’t Break the Grid, It Will Make It Smarter - Rewire America –This article explores smart electric panels as a way to avoid stressing the grid as we electrify heating and transportation. “…in Figure 1… we show a peak event from an actual electrified home around dinner time, using data provided by SPAN, a leading manufacturer of smart panels. The householder likely arrived home from work, plugged in their car, started a load of laundry and turned up the thermostat. As a result, the total electricity drawn from the grid exceeded 80 amps for several minutes, exceeding a safe limit for a 100 amp panel. If not for a smart panel, this household would likely have needed a 200 amp service upgrade when electrifying... (Below that), we see the same event as could be mediated by the smart panel. By shifting 34 minutes of EV charging (shown in orange) with no inconvenience to the householder, the maximum load is kept below that 80 amp threshold at all times… In data from SPAN’s electrical panels covering all contiguous U.S. climate zones, over 80 percent of peak events were less than 12 minutes long, and shifting the operation of just one of the water heater, dryer, EV charger, or HVAC system can mitigate 90 percent of all peak events.” Link here.

Report: Producing Green Hydrogen Would Cannibalize MA Clean Electricity Supply - “the total consumption of electricity in Massachusetts for all applications would increase to 2.7 times its current level if all methane (natural gas) in buildings were replaced by 100 percent hydrogen, whereas the complete replacement of methane combustion systems by heat pumps would increase it to 1.5 times the present level.”  The graphic below is an instructive one, and the contrast is even greater with geothermal heat pumps, which are closer to 400% efficient as opposed to air source heat pumps which are projected here to operate at a 237% efficiency. Tip from Sage Welch at the National Building Electrification Network and Sunstone Strategies. See the report here

Where Does NY’s Electric System Rank? Inside Climate News has published a blog ranking US states on their performance in the transition to carbon free electricity. We’ll be showing you 3 of their key graphics over the next 3 weeks. This week’s ranks states on their 2021 wind and solar generation, showing Texas as by far the leader, with New York ranked 24th. It’s interesting the degree to which wind accounts for most of the production in most states, particularly in the Midwest. Blog link here.

Electrification Ditty – If you don’t smile once during this 3:12-minute performance, we owe you a quarter next time we see you. Click here.


2023 RHN Legislative and Budget Agenda - The Renewable Heat Now Campaign (RHN) is organizing to win funding and policies that will move fossil fuels out of our buildings affordably and equitably. The legislative package includes the All-Electric New Building Act (S00562-A/A00920-A - Kavanaugh/Gallagher) that would sunset fossil fuels in new construction starting January 1, 2024. It also includes the NY Home Energy Equitable Transition (HEAT) Act – (S2016/A4592 – Krueger/Fahy) and the Energy Efficiency, Equity and Jobs Act (S3126c/A3996c – Parker/Hunter). In addition, RHN has also released an agenda for the NYS budget, which is currently being negotiated by the Governor and the Legislature. See more on the Renewable Heat Now Legislative Package here.

Contractors Corner:

Clean Heat Program Manual Changes - The NY State Clean Heat program sent an email on March 7th announcing program manual changes have been filed and effective as of March 1st. Here are the links to the NYS Clean Heat Program Manual, Version 9 and Con Edison Heat Pump Program Manual, Version 2. The email included the listing below of “primary changes” to the manual for Central Hudson, National Grid, NYSEG, O&R, and RG&E.

Decommissioning Incentives

  • Decommissioning incentives are not applicable to new construction and gut rehab projects. Incentive applications must include a completed decommissioning checklist.

GSHP Project Incentives

  • Total incentives for all Category 3 ground source projects are limited to $50,000 per project.

Prescriptive Application Timeline

  • Incentive applications qualifying for prescriptive category incentives may be submitted within 60 days after the heat pump system is commissioned. Language regarding this timeline has been edited for consistency.

Exemptions for Initial Technical Review/Pre-Inspection

  • A Designated Utility receiving a Custom application too late in the process for an Initial Technical Review and/or Pre-Inspection may consider granting an exemption, if it determines that the Participating Contractor and customer are acting in good faith and were not aware of the process requirements.

Custom Project Pre-Approval

  • Custom projects that are deemed to have missing or inaccurate information will not be issued an approval notification. Participating Contractors will have 45 days from the date that the Designated Utility issues the request for missing and/or incorrect information to complete their application. Language has been added to formalize this 45-day timeline.

Project Installation Timeline

  • Preliminary Incentive Offer Letter (PIOL) timelines in Section 4, Step 7 have been updated.

Gut Rehab

  • The definition of "gut rehab" now follows the definition provided in the TRM v10.

 

Electrification General Contractors Springing Up – Alison F. Takemura – Canary Media – Helios Homes “is one of many companies springing up across the U.S. to shepherd consumers through the... process of home electrification.” 

Geothermal Installations Won’t Raise Property Taxes - Geothermal heat pumps are exempted from property tax assessments in New York. This is granted at the state level, meaning local jurisdictions cannot disallow the exemption. The exemption can be found here under Section 487-a: Energy conservation improvements to certain residential premises. The exemption doesn’t require a formal application. If a homeowner believes their geothermal heating system has resulted in an increase in their assessed value, and they believe they would be eligible for exemption, they need to discuss it with their local assessor. Local assessor contact information can be found in the Municipal Profile application on this website. Thanks to Heather Deese, Dandelion Energy’s Director of Policy & Regulatory Affairs.

 

  

Utility Contacts for the Clean Heat Program - The Joint Utilities have published this updated list from heat pump contractors to use in resolving questions in the Clean Heat rebate program. This list can also be found on page 78 of the NYS Clean Heat Program Manual, Version 9 on page 78 and Con Edison Heat Pump Program Manual, Version 2 on page 80.


NY-GEO Member Map-Here's the map we refer folks to when we get requests for services or interest in a geothermal install.

Click here or on the image above to see the live version of the map



Climate Updates:

We'll give you a break on the Destabilization of the Climate this week !


Frequent Sources for Just In! briefs:

 

Green Energy Times

City & State First Read

POLITICO Weekly NY & NJ Energy email)

Canary Media

National Building Electrification Network & Sunstone Strategies



Just in! thanks NY-GEO board member John Ciovacco of Aztech Geothermal for his frequent proofreading contributions to this publication and Paul Maliszewski for his work on the briefs.





EVENTS:


*Indicates a New Listing or Updated Information

2023 04 26-27 Conference Registration Is OPEN - NY-GEO’s annual conference brings together the best of the best in the geothermal heat pump industry. The conference will be hosted at the Albany Marriott and will include dynamic Main Stage presenters, educational breakout sessions, dynamic exhibitors showcasing equipment and information, along with plenty of time to mix, mingle and connect. To register and learn more, click here. 

NY-GEO 2023 Sponsors as of 02 20


*2023 03 21 - K-12 HVAC Choices for Student Health and Learning – 2:00-3:00 pm ET - This “webinar follows the launch of our new report explaining how adopting all-electric, high-performance HVAC systems in new and existing schools supports student health, comfort, and learning while lowering energy costs, and minimizing climate pollution. You’ll hear from five expert speakers from RMI, UndauntedK12, CMTA, Perkins&Will, and the NYC Mayor’s Office of Climate & Environmental Justice.”  Register hereReport here.



2023 03 24 - Ensuring Electricity Affordability (on the way to Decarbonization) – 9:00 am-12:30 pm ET - Convener/Moderator: Janet Gail Besser for Raab Associates, Ltd. Host: Foley Hoag LLP - The art of rate design requires attention to behavioral considerations as well as to economics. What will it take for customers to respond to time-varying rates, and how do we design rates that support the electrification of both buildings and vehicles? Presenters will speak to approaches that make rates simpler for customers to understand and provide tools for them to respond. They will also discuss how active demand can address some of the reliability, as well as affordability concerns, especially for customers with high energy burdens. There is a $50 to $100 charge for this event Register here.

 

*2023 04 06 - Renewable Heat Now Power Hour – 7:00-8:00 pm ET – Renewable Heat Now (RHN) is organizing intensively for a package of NY legislature bills designed to aid NY’s transition to clean, fossil-fuel free heating. Join RHN for its monthly strategy meeting designed to inspire and inform. Register here.



Can You Find Your Picture from NY-GEO 2022? – Over 1,000 pictures from NY-GEO’s annual conference have made it to the web. See if you can find yourself among the 450 who took part in this groundbreaking event that annually celebrates and advances the most efficient and economical way to heat and cool our homes and places of work. Check out these pictures shot by Rachel Collett and John Ciovacco. Here’s Day 1 and here’s Day 2


JOBS !                                                                    * = new listing

List of Climate Tech Job Boards - Elaine Reddy – Ad Hoc Group – The Ad Hoc Group has put together a list of 27 climate tech related job boards.



Alliance for a Green Economy (AGREE) seeks:

- an Outreach Manager to develop outreach strategies for the newly created Central New York Clean Energy Hub, which will connect people to the clean energy economy and its benefits, including clean energy careers, improved energy affordability, home improvements, and rebates for businesses and transportation. The Outreach Manager will be managing a 4-person outreach team and coordinating all aspects of outreach to community members throughout the Central New York Region.

- four Energy Advisors for the CNY Clean Energy Hub to reach diverse communities throughout CNY with Hub materials, workshops, and energy affordability/clean energy opportunities.

- a Regulatory Attorney/Regulatory Advocate to spearhead our work in utility rate cases and regulatory proceedings in New York State advancing building electrification, ending our dependence on methane gas, increasing energy efficiency, energy affordability, and renewable energy generation, and preventing false solutions from capturing public funding.

- a Communications Director to build a public face for AGREE in our local Central New York community as well as across the state in order to support ongoing campaigns, respond to real-time developments and policy emergencies, and strategically raise AGREE’s profile and increase our constituent base.

(listed January 14, 2023) The postings are available here.



PWGC Environmental Engineers, Bohemia, NY - Geothermal Engineer – PWGC, a multi-year award-winning environmental engineering firm seeks an experienced professional engineer for closed loop geothermal projects in the downstate New York area. Expert knowledge of commercial building sciences, mechanical system design, conventional HVAC, heat pump technologies, building automation and energy modeling applications. This position requires 5-10 years related experience, bachelor’s degree in civil, mechanical or chemical engineering and a PE License. Advanced knowledge of CAD 3D and 4D software and REVIT. Interested? Send your resume to hr@pwgrosser.com or apply on our website at pwgrosser.com/careers 


PUSH Policy Coordinator - People United for Sustainable Housing (PUSH Buffalo) seeks a Policy Coordinator to support the work of the Policy & Strategy department, with a focus on local, state, and regional climate and environmental justice policies in the areas of transportation electrification, power generation, building decarbonization, and equitable investment. (listed 2022 08 27) The posting is available here



Sustainable Westchester - Clean Energy Associate, EnergySmart Homes. (Location: Mount Kisco, NY) - The Community Energy Advisor (CEA) is a full time position at Sustainable Westchester. This position will provide assistance, direction, organization, coordination of programs that work to inform residents, multifamily building owners, and small businesses, with an emphasis in low-to-moderate income and priority communities, of the options for adopting clean energy strategies in their homes and businesses. $50k-$60k/year. (listed 2022 08 06) The posting is available here

 

Sustainable Westchester - Marketing, Communications and Outreach Director. (Location: Mount Kisco, NY) The Director of Marketing, Communications and Outreach will be responsible for developing and implementing Sustainable Westchester’s marketing, communication and outreach plans & strategies including public relations, digital communications, key messaging, storytelling and brand experience. $75k-$80k/year.  (listed 2022 08 06) The posting is available here

 

Clean Energy Associate (PAID INTERNSHIP) - Sustainable Westchester aims to educate and train the next generation of leaders in sustainability in Westchester. We hire students and recent graduates who have the skills, passion, intelligence and maturity to take on significant responsibility to help bring clean energy solutions to our residents. Throughout the duration of the position, associates may work with elected officials, municipal leaders, community members, subject matter experts, and consultants to provide a one-of-a-kind experience. We are committed to providing these valuable work opportunities to people from communities that have been underrepresented in the environmental field. (listed 2022 08 06) See Sustainable Westchester website for more.


Rewiring America – Federal Senior Policy Manager – The FSPM will own and drive critical efforts to influence federal policy initiatives. This role will manage the Federal policy team and lobbyists, lead the strategy and execution of federal policy, oversee targeted research and the drafting of key content, and provide critical perspectives in support of the multi-pronged policy strategy for Rewiring. This important work will continue and grow Rewiring America’s ability to affect federal policy, removing key barriers for electrification. (listed 2022 07 09) The posting is available here.

 


Rewiring America – Local Policy Director - With a clear vision, smart strategies, and significant and sustained financial support, Rewiring America is growing rapidly. As the Local Policy Manager on the Policy team you will lead on efforts to influence local policy initiatives around the country, particularly in public schools. This role will drive policy strategy, targeted research, support the drafting of policy and campaign documents, and provide input into the policy team’s public school electrification work. (listed 2022 07 09) The posting is available here.



Sierra Club Campaign Representative - Building Electrification (Location: MA/CT) - The Sierra Club seeks a strategic, collaborative, and equity-focused Campaign Representative to advance initiatives to end fossil fuel use in homes and buildings across Massachusetts and Connecticut. In this newly created position, the Campaign Representative will join a regional team that is working to address the climate crisis by moving the Northeast from dirty to clean energy… They represent Sierra Club to government officials, the media, business and community leaders, allies and other organizations, and the public. (listed 2022 07 09) The posting is available here. 

 


 The Climate Solutions Accelerator of the Genesee Finger Lakes Region – Is looking to hire two staff members: 

·    The Manager of Organizational Programs will lead our efforts to educate, inspire, and support businesses and nonprofits that want to take action on climate.

·    The Program Director will be in charge of developing an exciting new program that we're not allowed to talk about until our contract with the funder is fully executed (which makes the hiring process a bit complicated). (listed 2022 05 28). The posting is available here

 


Hudson Valley Climate Leadership Coordinator-The Hudson Valley Regional Council is hiring for a full-time Climate Leadership Coordinator. The successful applicant will carry out tasks related to the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation’s Climate Leadership Support Services Program for the seven-county Mid-Hudson Region. The Regional Council is looking forward to welcoming another collaborative, passionate, and motivated member to the team!  (listed 2022 05 14) The posting is available here.



Alliance for a Green Economy (AGREE)is excited to announce that our organization is growing, and we are looking to fill the key position of Research Fellow. We seek passionate, intelligent, and kind people who work well both independently and as part of a team, and who are ready to roll up their sleeves and get stuff done.” (listed 2022 04 09).



Acadia Center is Hiring - for an energy efficiency and building energy justice manager, a senior energy attorney and a climate and energy policy analyst (listed 2022 03 05)  Click here for more information.

 


Energy Department Will Recruit 1,000 Additional Staffers For New Corps To Tackle The Climate Crisis • The DOE is starting up a Clean Energy Corps to help implement the bipartisan infrastructure law and develop clean-energy solutions to the climate crisis, the agency said. It will hire 1,000 new employees through a newly launched hiring portal.” (from 2022 01 14 Green Energy News) [CNN]

 

HVAC Project Manager – Aztech Geothermal, Ballston Spa, NY – Aztech Geothermal, a well-respected Geothermal Heat Pump design-build contractor, is seeking an experienced HVAC Project Manager responsible for estimating project costs, purchasing/sourcing materials & equipment, project planning including management of technicians and subcontractors. This position requires 3-5+ years' experience in Residential &/or Commercial HVAC, including AC/heat pump equipment, power and control wiring, HVAC plumbing, and sheetmetal/air distribution systems. Strong candidates must be comfortable with computers and common Microsoft programs with ability to learn industry specific analysis software. Interested? Send your resume to info@aztechgeo.com.

 


Mechanical Design Engineer – Geothermal Focus – CHA Consulting - CHA Consulting, Inc. is an innovative, full-service engineering consulting and construction management firm working to responsibly improve the world we live in. Currently seeking a PE mechanical engineer with experience in the design of geothermal systems to support building scale and district geothermal project development, feasibility, design and construction. CGD certification preferred. Rochester, Syracuse, Albany, Northern NJ or Boston based. More here (Listed 2021 10 04)


Sierra Club Seeks Expert on “Renewable Natural Gas” - Sierra Club is looking for a new expert for PUC proceedings across the U.S. on "renewable natural gas" (including biomethane), synthetic gas and hydrogen. Experience with utility regulation and gas utility business models is a plus. If you have any recommendations, please email: Amneh Minkara (amneh.minkara@sierraclub.org)


UHAB is Hiring -UHAB (Urban Homesteading Assistance Board ) is hiring a Project Associate focusing on Energy Services, including Co-ops Go Solar, Clean Heat for Co-ops, and other energy efficiency and energy-reducing renewable technology partnerships... We also have a few other positions posted, for a part-time Affordable Housing Loan Officer, and a full-time Project Associate on the Co-op Improvement Program who’ll provide services to distressed affordable buildings. All of the job postings are viewable on our website here. I appreciate your help to get the word out within your networks!” From email from Emily Ng.



Aztech Geothermal is Hiring- Seeking an Experienced Heat Pump Technician in NY's Capital District - Aztech Geothermal is looking for an Experienced Residential HVAC Technician in the Capital Region to join our growing installation and service business based in Ballston Spa. Geothermal heat pump experience a plus. but not required; we are willing to train the right individual. Our company is based in Ballston Spa and principally serves the Capital District, Hudson Valley and Western Massachusetts. More Information


“Dandelion Energy is growing its Drilling Department and we are looking for Senior/Master Drillers to operate our new rigs and lead our on-site drilling efforts for residential geothermal projects.In this role, you will make a significant impact in redefining how residential ground heat exchangers are installed which will lay the groundwork for Dandelion’s future growth and success. The Senior Driller will be directly responsible for the production rate of geothermal boreholes, the operation, and maintenance of equipment, the safety of on-site workers, and delivering feedback to both the Operations and Engineering team on how to optimize the overall process. For more information about the Senior Driller opening please apply here: https://boards.greenhouse.io/dandelionenergy/jobs/4879245002

Not a Senior Driller? check out our other exciting opportunities on our career site: https://dandelionenergy.com/jobs


 

Ongoing – NYSERDA is hiring! The New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) has ongoing recruitment opportunities. Join our email list or check this page periodically to learn about new career opportunities. All qualified individuals will be evaluated for each relevant position for which they apply. Opportunities include:

NYSERDA Career Opportunities

NY Green Bank Career Opportunities

Paid Fellowship Opportunities

Paid Internship Opportunities

To learn more about NYSERDA, please visit our social media channels.



 

NY-GEO is not necessarily notified when jobs are filled. If you find one of these jobs are no longer available, please let us know.