April 2020 Newsletter

Monthly news and updates from the Michigan Energy Efficiency Contractors Association (MEECA).

MEECA Announces Date for Virtual Awards Celebration

 

This year’s busy calendar of professional events has been upended by the need for social distancing. As a result, many companies and organizations are making adjustments using the online resources at hand. In this vein, MEECA is pleased to announce its 2020 Virtual Awards Celebration which has been planned for 3:00-5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 27, 2020.

 

While this cannot replace the in-person elements of our Annual Banquet & Awards Celebration which was canceled last month, it will be a welcome opportunity for MEECA members, partners and friends to reconnect, and to acknowledge the outstanding work of our 2020 award winners. We are excited that our previously scheduled keynote speaker MPSC Commissioner Tremaine Phillips will join us to share his thoughts before the actual awards ceremony. We hope you can join us too!

 

More details and a registration link are coming soon. In the meantime, we thank our sponsors whose generous support has been so critical to MEECA during this challenging period:

 

 

COVID-19 Updates & Resources

 

Construction industry to reopen in May

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer plans to reopen Michigan's construction industry on May 7 after a six-week shutdown caused by the deadly coronavirus outbreak. The stay-at-home order currently in effect can be found online.

 

 

SBAM COVID-19 Resources

  • The Small Business Association of Michigan (SBAM) maintains a comprehensive website with timely information for Michigan companies.
  • Be sure to check out their Get Back to Work Safely: Tips and Resources page. In particular, it discusses the requirement for business owners to have a written preparedness and response plan, per EO 2020-59.

 

 

MEEA COVID Quick Links

The Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA) has a new website featuring links to various industry resources and online contractor trainings.

 

 

Schneider Electric provides an online Library of Online Events and Webinars including training opportunities. For reference see their brochure Optimizing building operations during low-occupancy situations.

 

 

Other useful online resources to monitor regularly:

 

www.Michigan.gov/coronavirus

 

www.michiganbusiness.org/covid19

 

www.paycheckprotectionprogrammichigan.com/

 

www.sbdcmichigan.org

 

Member Spotlight

Many Michigan companies--including MEECA members--have been sharing their time, resources, and expertise to help others during the pandemic. This month we highlight one such business, Duro-Last, Inc. The Saginaw-based firm was recently highlighted for manufacturing gear for healthcare workers. Learn more about their important contribution.

 

Thank you to everyone in the MEECA network who is making a difference—locally, nationally, and globally!

Energy Efficiency in the News

 

U.P. Energy Task Force Submits Recommendations on Propane

The U.P. Energy Task Force has submitted a report with 14 propane recommendations to Gov. Whitmer. Some of these recommendations involve augmenting energy waste reduction and weatherization. The official report is available online.

 

 

Michigan Attorney General files lawsuit challenging DOE

Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel recently joined a coalition of 14 attorneys general and the City of New York in filing a lawsuit challenging the Department of Energy’s (DOE) revisions to its process rule, parts of which will ultimately reduce energy savings and increase pollutant emissions.

 

 

Four Michigan cities are national leaders in energy efficiency

U.S. EPA announced that four Michigan small cities rank among the top 10 of their peers nationally for energy efficiency based on the number of buildings saving electricity, costs and greenhouse gas emissions. Jackson ranked first among small U.S. cities in 2020.

 

 

MSU is recognized by DOE’s Better Buildings Challenge

Michigan State University has been recognized for reducing its energy use by 21 percent, surpassing its original goal of 20 percent two years ahead of schedule.

 

 

MPSC approves DTE integrated resource plan

The Michigan Public Service Commission has approved a revised integrated resource plan (IRP) for DTE Electric Co. that addresses concerns raised by the Commission in February. Changes to the original plan include expanded energy waste reduction (EWR) programs and increased annual savings goals to 1.75 percent in 2020 and 2 percent in 2021.

 

 

ICC board validates 2021 IECC voting results

The year-long process of developing triennial updates to the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) is administered by the International Code Council (ICC). It gathers and vets input from local officials across the nation. This process yielded a 2021 IECC that is at least 10 percent more efficient than the 2018 IECC. Recently the ICC Board unanimously confirmed these historic efficiency gains.

 

Program Information

You can count on us to support our community and your business. We can help by connecting your customers with programs that save them money. Let’s rebuild Michigan together. Visit ConsumersEnergy.com/startsaving for energy efficiency tips and rebates.

Consumers Energy 2020 Measure Bonus Incentives

 

For projects completed by June 30, trade allies can submit a rebate application to receive an automatic bonus. This program applies to TLEDs, infrared heaters, demand control ventilation, VFDs and more. Click here to check the measure list, eligibility and rules. Direct any questions to Ralph Huston at rhuston@franklinenergy.com or 517-881-9971.

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Resources

  • ICYMI: PACE in the Current Economic Climate webinar is available to view 
  • In addition, online contractor trainings for PACE certification (newly updated!). features new market updates, case studies, information on PACE Express, PACE for new construction, and more.

Upcoming Events

Consumers Energy Cooling Comprehensive Tune-up Webinars

April 28 - May 7, 2020

 

Michigan Saves Peer-to-Peer Webinar: Exploring Health and Safety Precautions for Contractors Returning to Work Amid COVID-19

2:00 p.m. Friday, May 1, 2020

 

Join this insightful and timely discussion with national and state energy            professionals on workplace safety to help protect the health of your staff and customers as you get back to work.

 

"Ask A PACE Administrator" webinar on the national PACE market

10:00 a.m., Friday, May 1, 2020

 

MEEA Webinar: Exploring On-Bill Financing Across the Midwest

12:00-1:00 p.m. (CST), Tuesday, May 5, 2020

 

“PACE 2.0” webinar on the differentiation between funders

2:00 p.m., Thursday, May 7, 2020

 

Consumers Energy Business EE Programs: Trade Ally and Contractor Orientations

9:00-11:30 a.m., Thursday, May 7, 2020

 

BOC Level 1 Training Series

Building Operator Certification: Hosted by Consumers Energy, DTE Energy, BWL, and EGLE.

July 8, 2020 through September, 2020

 

MEECA member GreenHome Institute is seeking new board members to help advance the organization’s cause of empowering people to make healthier and more sustainable choices in the renovation and construction of the places we live. If interested, visit the GHI website.

Applications are due Sunday, May 10, 2020

 

LEED for Homes v4 Green Rater 3-day Online Training

GreenHome Institute

12:00 p.m.. Monday, May 11 to 4:00 p.m., Wednesday, May 13, 2020

 

MEECA's 2020 Virtual Awards Celebration

Save-the-Date: 3:00-5:00 p.m., Wednesday, May 27, 2020

 

Net Zero Build Summit

Rescheduled to August 25-26, 2020

 

Michigan Energy Efficiency Conference and Exhibition (formerly May 5, 2020)

Hosted by DTE Energy and The Engineering Society of Detroit

Rescheduled to October 20, 2020

 

Funding Opportunities

The United States Department of Agriculture’s Rural Business-Cooperative Service is seeking applications for its Rural Energy for America Program, which makes loan guarantees and grants available for renewable energy systems, energy efficiency, energy audits and more. The deadlines to apply for renewable energy system and energy efficiency improvement grants are Oct. 31, 2019, and March 31, 2020, while applications for loan guarantees are accepted year-round. Find out more here.
 

 

The Michigan Energy Office’s Small Manufacturers Energy Waste Reduction Incentive Pilot is offering rebates of up to $15,000 per company for small manufacturers that can implement energy efficiency activities between Oct. 1, 2019 and July 31, 2020. There is a 100% minimum match requirement. Click here to learn more about eligibility and apply.

 

 

USDA Rural Energy Savings Program

 

 

Detroit 2030 District is a free program that challenges Detroit building owners and managers to reduce energy waste. Those who achieve the greatest reductions from the prior-year baseline will be recognized at the first annual Detroit Energy Challenge Award Ceremony in 2021. To learn more, visit their website.