HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

H.B. NO.

1583

THIRTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2019

 

STATE OF HAWAII

 

 

 

 

 

 

A BILL FOR AN ACT

 

 

relating to electric grid resiliency.

 

 

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 


SECTION 1. The legislature finds that the State's residents and businesses are vulnerable to disruptions in the State's energy systems caused by extreme weather events or other disasters. In 2017, Puerto Rico was devastated by Hurricane Maria, leaving a majority of the island's residents without power for months after the storm made landfall. The legislature further finds that in the event that a disaster of the same magnitude as Hurricane Maria impacted the State, having shelters that are equipped to provide backup power independent of the electric grid would greatly increase disaster preparedness and bolster potential recovery efforts.

The legislature recognizes that in the past, public schools throughout the State have served as designated shelters during hurricane warnings and other disaster events. In 2016, in an effort to provide air conditioning to more schools while keeping utility costs low, the legislature created a goal for the State's public schools to become net-zero in regards to energy use by January 1, 2035. Accordingly, numerous schools have subsequently installed renewable energy systems to meet this goal. However, these schools have had no directive or incentive to install renewable energy systems that are capable of both functioning independently of the broader electric grid and providing backup power during and following a disaster event. The legislature recognizes that these renewable energy systems are capable of providing ancillary services to the electric grid during and following disaster events and aiding the State's electricity providers in attaining their respective renewable energy portfolio benchmarks. However, schools are further opposed to installing these systems due to higher costs associated with functions that are not necessary for the school's normal daily operations.

Therefore, the legislature finds that it would be beneficial to create incentives for the department of education to invest in renewable energy systems that are capable of functioning independently of the electric grid and providing backup power. Additionally, the legislature believes that it is necessary to authorize all schools in the State to execute interconnection agreements with relevant utilities that credit or refund the schools for the grid services provided to cover the additional cost of installing these systems.

Accordingly, the purpose of this Act is to:

(1) Require the department of education to establish a pilot program in which various schools are provided with renewable energy systems that are capable of providing backup power in the event of a natural disaster or other similar emergency; and

(2) Require the public utilities commission to open a proceeding to incentivize the implementation of these renewable energy systems.

SECTION 2. Chapter 269, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended by adding a new section to part V to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:

"269- Resiliency programs. By July 1, 2019, the public utilities commission shall open a proceeding to incentivize the installation of renewable energy systems that can provide backup power in the event the broader electric grid cannot provide power. The commission shall consider, without limitation, establishing programs that pay for services rendered to the electric grid out of available moneys in the public benefits fund."

SECTION 3. Section 302A-1510, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:

"[[]302A-1510[]] Sustainable schools initiative. (a) The department shall establish a goal of becoming net-zero with respect to energy use, producing as much renewable energy as the department consumes across all public school facilities, by January 1, 2035.

(b) The department shall use the amount and value of energy consumed by the department across all public school facilities during the 2015-2016 fiscal year as the benchmark for measuring the department's progress toward the energy usage goal set forth in subsection (a).

(c) The department shall submit an annual report that shall include information on:

(1) The overall progress toward the net-zero energy goal set forth in subsection (a);

(2) Its plans and recommendations to advance the net-zero energy goal set forth in subsection (a); and

(3) Any challenges or barriers encountered or anticipated by the department in meeting the net-zero energy goal set forth in subsection (a).

(d) The department shall expedite the cooling of all public school classrooms to a temperature acceptable for student learning. When implementing classroom cooling measures, the department, and any contractor hired to implement classroom cooling measures, shall maximize energy efficiency and installation and operating cost savings over the entire life of the project.

(e) Pursuant to this section, the department shall include in the report the status of the implementation of measures taken to cool public school classrooms as required by subsection (d). The report shall include the following information:

(1) The number of completed classrooms in which cooling measures were implemented and the number of classrooms remaining that require cooling;

(2) The different types of cooling measures implemented;

(3) The approximate cost per classroom for planned cooling measures, including installation, upgrades, equipment, maintenance, and projected operating costs over the life of the installed cooling measures;

(4) The approximate cost per completed classroom for cooling measures implemented, including installation, upgrades, equipment, maintenance, and projected operating costs over the life of the installed cooling measures;

(5) The number of completed classrooms in which energy efficiency measures were installed or implemented and the number of classrooms remaining that require energy efficiency measures; and

(6) The different types of energy efficiency measures installed or implemented.

(f) The department shall establish and implement a pilot program in at least four schools in which the schools are provided with renewable energy systems that are capable of continuously providing backup electrical power, to be sourced from renewable energy, in the event that the electric grid cannot provide power. The department shall select schools that are likely to be designated as emergency shelters in the event of a natural disaster. In selecting the renewable energy systems, the department shall consider, among other things, a system's capacity for generating and providing energy to the electric grid over the lifetime of the system.

(g) The department shall report its findings and recommendations, including any proposed legislation, to the legislature no later than twenty days prior to the convening of each regular session."

SECTION 4. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.

SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect upon its approval.

 

INTRODUCED BY:

_____________________________

 

 


 


 

Report Title:

DOE; PUC; Electric Grid; Renewable Energy; Sustainable Schools Initiative

 

Description:

Requires the Department of Education to establish a pilot program in which various schools are provided with renewable energy systems that are capable of providing backup power in the event of a natural disaster or other similar emergency. Requires the Public Utilities Commission to open a proceeding to incentivize the implementation of these systems.

 

 

 

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