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Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Congress (But Were Afraid to Ask)


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On October 8, Executive VP of Programs and Development Brian Castelli addressed attendants of the Plumbing Manufactures Institute at their 2008 Fall Meeting in Arlington, Va. His presentation Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Congress (But Were Afraid to Ask) gives a straight-forward analysis of the how’s and why’s of policymaking, particularly as they pertain to energy legislation. Castelli also offered a prescient energy policy outlook, and called attention to the interdependence of water and energy consumption.

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Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Congress (But Were Afraid to Ask)

  1. 1. Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Congress* *But Were Afraid to Ask Plumbing Manufacturers Institute October 8, 2008 Arlington, Virginia Brian T. Castelli, Executive Vice President-Programs/Development
  2. 2. Presentation Outline <ul><li>What is the Alliance to Save Energy? </li></ul><ul><li>What Ails Congress? </li></ul><ul><li>EISA – Post-Mortem </li></ul><ul><li>Looking Ahead 2009 </li></ul><ul><li>Water/Toilet Efficiency </li></ul><ul><li>Legislative Strategy </li></ul>
  3. 3. What is the Alliance? <ul><li>An NGO whose mission is: To promote energy efficiency worldwide to achieve a healthier economy, a cleaner environment, and greater energy security </li></ul><ul><li>Guided by a 37-Member, Elected Board of Directors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Led by Sen. Mark Pryor (D-AR) & Jim Rogers, CEO of Duke Energy </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>9 Members of Congress – Bi-Cameral; Bi-Partisan </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Environmental, consumer, and trade associations heads, state and local policy makers, corporate executives </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>Forging Alliances with Business, Govt. & Public Interests </li></ul><ul><li>Alliance enjoys sponsorship by > 150 businesses and organizations across a broad spectrum of economic sectors. </li></ul><ul><li>Complete list at: </li></ul>Alliance ASSOCIATES
  5. 5. First, What Ails Congress? <ul><li>Whatever happened to the Congress that used to pass Appropriations bills and follow regular order? </li></ul><ul><li>The Broken Branch : Neither body passed a single appropriations bill in ’08 and the Senate set an all time record for filibusters. </li></ul>
  6. 6. What’s Wrong Under the Dome <ul><li>Collapse of the center in Congress – extinction of the “moderates” </li></ul><ul><li>Sharper partisanship in the last 20+ years </li></ul><ul><li>The impact of “permanent campaigns” </li></ul><ul><li>Weaker Congressional leadership </li></ul><ul><li>Trend to the extreme in both parties: “anything goes” as “the ends justify the means” </li></ul><ul><li>Adversaries are enemies </li></ul><ul><li>Bending of rules & precedents </li></ul><ul><li>“ Regular order” is frequently ignored (e.g. votes held open) </li></ul>
  7. 7. Maybe Gridlock should be the national pastime?
  8. 8. Post-Mortem on EISA <ul><li>Energy Independence & Security Act (EISA), P. L. 110-140, is the most sweeping energy bill enacted in over 30 years </li></ul><ul><li>First increase in CAFE standards (to 35 mpg by 2020) since 1975 </li></ul><ul><li>Renewable Fuel Standard ( RFS ): Set a minimum annual volume of renewable fuel in U.S. gasoline, rising to 36 billion gallons in 2022 </li></ul><ul><li>Appliance & Lighting Efficiency standards </li></ul>
  9. 9. Left on the Cutting Room Floor <ul><li>Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard : Would have required electric utilities to generate15% of their electricity from renewable energy resources by the year 2020; up to 4% of the 15% target could have been met with EE measures </li></ul><ul><li>Energy Tax Incentive extensions were also left out, because they were “paid for” by $22 billion in oil and gas subsidies that would have been repealed </li></ul>
  10. 10. End Game: the 110 th Congress <ul><li>Partisan, election-year wrangling & disputes over “pay-fors” prevented final action on tax incentives legislation, despite overwhelming support in both House & Senate </li></ul><ul><li>House-passed Pelosi energy bill and “Gang of Twenty” package in the Senate fell by the wayside after Wall Street crisis erupted </li></ul><ul><li>Efficiency and Renewable Tax Incentives finally pass as part of “Bail Out” – Rnd. 2 </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kateri Callahan at Press Conference with Sns. Baucus, Grassley & Bingaman to push tax credits, House doesn’t include them in their NO vote, & then Senate puts them back in their bill & it passes in House as well. </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. <ul><li>For the 111 th Congress , energy legislation will be front and center </li></ul><ul><li>Good chance for another economic stimulus bill in January – perhaps addressing the anticipated home heating oil crisis this winter </li></ul><ul><li>Increasing support for Green Jobs as a means of retraining the unemployed and addressing energy efficiency for existing homes; </li></ul><ul><li>Support growing for Tom Friedman’s idea of a “green revolution” that would rebuild the economy and develop new markets overseas for RE and EE technology </li></ul>Looking Ahead
  12. 12. 2009 Outlook <ul><li>Good chance for a major energy bill ahead of climate legislation </li></ul><ul><li>Push to enact provisions left over from EISA, e.g. RES and building energy codes, and for $$ for authorized but unfunded provisions from EPACT ‘05 and EISA ‘07 </li></ul><ul><li>Alliance is developing a “portable package” of policy recommendations for appropriations “asks” and for new proposals such as Smart Growth/VMT </li></ul><ul><li>We will be briefing transition teams on our “asks” </li></ul><ul><li>Transportation Reauthorization is up in ’09 and will be a major target for EE initiatives </li></ul>
  13. 13. <ul><li>Alliance, together with other organizations, is working to develop recommendations for the next climate bill </li></ul><ul><li>We are looking at evaluation, measurement and verification; third-party programs; how much should be spent on R&D </li></ul><ul><li>Objective is to develop a unified “ask” from the efficiency community by the end of this year, then start briefing Congressional staff </li></ul><ul><li>We expect negotiation on the next climate bill in ’09, with enactment of a bill more likely in 2010 </li></ul><ul><li>Economic woes, war in Iraq/Afganistan/etc., and new Administration initiatives expected to crowd out climate bill in ‘09 </li></ul>What about a Climate Bill?
  14. 14. After Wall Street collapsed, this election is indeed about change <ul><li>small </li></ul><ul><li>change </li></ul>
  15. 15. The Water and Energy Connection – the Big Picture <ul><li>The National Regulatory Research Institute (2006) and the Electric Power Research Institute (2002) determined that the production of 1,000 gallons of water (from ground and surface) uses 1.4 kWh and 1.8 kWh, respectively. That’s enough water for only 1 person for 10 days. </li></ul><ul><li>The Alliance’s International WATERGY program reduces water and energy consumption in the delivery of water from the utility to the consumer. In many of the municipal water projects we have done, water and energy costs are 60 to 80% of a municipality’s overall budget. (example follows) </li></ul><ul><li>EPA notes that supply and treatment together use 56 Billion kWh per year. </li></ul>
  16. 16. CASE STUDY: Emfuleni, South Africa <ul><li>ESCO Model of Performance Contracting APPLIED TO WATER </li></ul><ul><li>PROBLEM </li></ul><ul><li>• 80% of water delivered was lost through leaking plumbing fixtures! </li></ul><ul><li>• Exacerbated by high pressure in bulk water supply lines: </li></ul><ul><li> makes existing leaks worse; </li></ul><ul><li> premature failure of plumbing fixtures in this low-income area. </li></ul><ul><li>SOLUTION </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Fix/replace plumbing fixtures </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Pressure reduction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Water pressure management firm acting as ESCO </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fees: firm gets 20% of savings </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Build-Own-Operate-Transfer to municipality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>after 5 years </li></ul></ul>
  17. 17. Emfuleni Case Study, continued The water lost was enough to fill two Olympic swimming pools every hour!
  18. 18. Emfuleni Case Study, continued <ul><li>RESULTS </li></ul><ul><li>• Payback period: 3 months </li></ul><ul><li>• Annual Savings </li></ul><ul><li>COST: $3.8 million </li></ul><ul><li>ENERGY: >14 million kWh </li></ul><ul><li>WATER: 7 million kiloliters </li></ul><ul><li>CO 2 Emissions avoided: </li></ul><ul><li>12,000 tonnes </li></ul><ul><li>• Performance contracting applied to water supply </li></ul>
  19. 19. Case Study – the 1.28 Solution <ul><li>High-efficiency toilets are defined by the EPA as those that use an average of 20% less water per flush than the industry standard of 1.6 gallons </li></ul><ul><li>High-E toilets can save up to 8,760 gallons of water annually for a family of four (averaging 24 flushes/day) </li></ul><ul><li>Types include the gravity-fed, single-flush, dual-flush, pressure-assist and power-assist high performance toilets </li></ul>
  20. 20. Case Study – the 1.28 Solution <ul><li>EPA Water Sense high-efficiency toilet standard is set a 1.28 gpf (with removal of 350 grams of waste) as of 1/24/07 </li></ul><ul><li>California passed the 1.28 gpf standard in 07 </li></ul><ul><li>Need to avoid different state standards, particularly as more states understand water conservation and the water/energy nexus. </li></ul><ul><li>So, how best to legislate a 1.28gpf standard? </li></ul>
  21. 21. Alliance Legislative Strategy Recommendations <ul><li>Build your campaign around realistic expectations; </li></ul><ul><li>Make sure you have all the technical data in hand for the first meeting with committee staff; </li></ul><ul><li>Have supporting letters to the Committee from key “stakeholder” groups; </li></ul><ul><li>Be prepared to answer “who opposes the provision & why”; and </li></ul><ul><li>Demonstrate energy efficiency savings plus environmental & water gains </li></ul>
  22. 22. Identify your champions & get the right legislative vehicle <ul><li>Any successful legislative “campaign” begins with securing the right “champions” for your initiative, in this case legislative language mandating a national standard; </li></ul><ul><li>Stand-alone bills are difficult; </li></ul><ul><li>Identify a broader bill that has “legs” and then cross-walk the committee members with your natural constituencies; </li></ul><ul><li>Find a key member of the authorizing committee to “champion” your issue </li></ul>
  23. 23. Build the Right Coalition to Yield Success <ul><li>Any technical legislative provision ultimately depends on the coalition of supporting organizations; members must be contacted; </li></ul><ul><li>Work closely with the federal agency involved (DOE) to make certain there isn’t opposition or unanswered questions at the agency level; </li></ul><ul><li>Is there a CBO “scoring” issue – what, if any, is the cost impact of the provision? </li></ul><ul><li>Quantifiable numbers must be developed in support; </li></ul><ul><li>Look at working with trade press to build interest and credit the members who work on your issue </li></ul>
  24. 24. Contact Us! <ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Alliance to Save Energy </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>1200 18 th Street, NW </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Washington, D.C. 20036 </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Phone: 202.857.0666 </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Website: </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Brian T. Castelli, EVP Programs & Development [email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Brad Penney, Director, Government Relations [email_address] </li></ul>
  25. 25. “ The Broken Branch ,” by Thomas Mann and Norman Ornstein Oxford Press, 2006 “Hot, Flat & Crowded,” by Thomas L. Friedman Farrar, Strauss & Giroux, 2008 Recommended Reading