Distributed Power Group Promotes Technology Solutions

An energy group in the United States has staged a ‘Congressional Distributed Power Day’ to explain the benefits of DG technologies.

WASHINGTON, DC, US, 2001-06-07 [SolarAccess.com] An energy group in the United States has staged a ‘Congressional Distributed Power Day’ to explain the benefits of DG technologies. The Distributed Power Coalition of America met Wednesday with members of Congress and their staff to discuss the “immediate and significant contributions” that are available from solar energy, wind turbines, microturbine generators, fuel cells, reciprocating engines and storage technology. The goal of the event was to promote DG as a means to overcome inadequate generation and over-extended transmission systems, as well as rolling blackouts and rate increases. “I believe distributed energy represents both the ultimate form of customer choice, and one of the best methods for reducing demand on our already overloaded power systems,” says Rep. Heather Wilson (R-NM). “By making distributed power more accessible, we will help lower energy bills for consumers and ensure that we have the power to continue to fuel the new economy.. “Wider use of distributed energy technology would improve power quality and reliability, while also bringing more efficient and environmentally responsible energy resources into the mainstream,” she adds. “Energy self-sufficiency is an integral part of the solution to the current energy crisis and should be a guiding principle of our national energy policy,” adds Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), the other political champion of the event. “Distributed power technology gives individuals and institutions the ability to meet their own energy needs.” The DPCA event included a display of various DG products and systems, most of which are already working or ready to be installed at businesses across the U.S. Distributed power includes an array of environmentally sensitive, high efficiency on-site power generation, power control, energy storage and energy delivery products and systems that can be used to lower electricity costs, improve power quality and reliability, and lessen the impact of power production on the environment. “Distributed power can be located close to the customer, easing congestion in electrical grids and reducing the chance for outages, while taking advantage of new environmentally-sound technologies to add to the nation’s energy supply,” says DPCA chairman Daniel Dessanti. “It is in the public interest to deploy distributed energy resources as expeditiously as possible.” Consumers in many parts of the country are facing a critical shortage of electricity, with high demand, tight supplies and constraints in transmission systems leading to an increase in power outages, reduced power reliability, and high costs. The event in Washington promoted DPCA’s recommendations to enable the prompt installation of clean distributed power to increase the supply of electricity and to revise tariff structures to encourage the installation of DG without artificial financial penalties. It wants to streamline the interconnect process and waives unreasonable interconnection fees and charges, and waive standby charges, stranded asset charges, exit fees, and similar charges for DG systems that are deployed to help stabilize the volatile energy market. It also wants to stimulate the development of combined heat and power applications (cogeneration) through recognition of the value of avoided energy losses and the energy and environmental efficiencies of CHP DPCA was formed in 1997 to promote the deployment of distributed power. Its members include Avista, Austin Energy, Boston Gas, Capstone Turbine, Ceramic Fuel Cells, Cleco, Consolidated Natural Gas, Duke Energy, Encorp, Enron, Honeywell, Keyspan Energy, Niagara Mohawk Energy, PECO Energy, Plug Power, PowerLight, Siemens Westinghouse, Southern California Gas, Texaco Energy, Tucson Electric Power, and Wisconsin Gas. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy is ex officio member.

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