Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) Program

October 25, 1999

PIER Mission
The mission of the PIER Program is to conduct public interest energy research that seeks to improve the quality of life for California’s citizens by providing environmentally sound, safe, reliable and affordable energy services and products.

The PIER program Manager is:
    Ron Kukulka,   916-654-4185,

PIER is organized into 6 Areas, each with a designated manager.

- Renewables
   George Simons,   916-654-4659,

- Environmentally-Preferred Advanced Generation (EPAG)
   Mike Batham,   916-654-4548,

- Residential and Commercial Buildings
   Nancy Jenkins,  916-654-4739,

- Industrial / Agricultural / Water
   Ben Mehta,   916-654-4044,

- Energy-Related Environmental
   Kelly Birkinshaw,  916-654-4542,

- Strategic Science and Technology
    Tom Tanton,   916-654-4930,

 Renewable Energy Research
George Simons

Affordability - Difficult being cost competitive in a deregulated electricity market
Reliability - Currently lack reliability and dispatchability of conventional generators
Power Quality/Safety - Concerns over islanding, power quality and down-line safety
Environmental - May not be fully utilizing ways to provide environmental benefits

Develop a diverse and competitive renewable energy industry that is an acknowledged leader in providing clean, safe, reliable and affordable electricity to California

Near Term:  Help make 7000 MW of existing renewable energy technologies cost competitive by 2003
Longer Term:  Develop an additional 8000 MW of new renewable energy technologies that openly compete in California’s deregulated marketplace by 2011

 Environmentally-Preferred Advanced Generation (EPAG) Research
Mike Batham

Distributed Generation - Need automated controls, packaged, standardized units and documentation of end user value added benefits
Reliability - Lack of independent performance verification
Emissions Reduction - Shift from post-combustion controls to reduce emissions formation
Reduced Cost - Develop innovative hybrid combination of cycles using new materials at reduced O&M

Develop a balanced and cost-competitive mixture of EPAG technologies that will provide clean, reliable and high-quality electricity for California.

Near Term:  Develop clean natural gas reciprocating engines
Mid-Term:  Develop advanced MTG and fuel cell systems
Long Term:  Develop hybrid and other innovative high-efficiency systems

 Residential and Commercial Buildings End-Use Efficiency Research
Nancy Jenkins

Energy consumption is increasing in hotter, inland areas as new building construction increases in these areas.
Development of energy efficient products and services does not adequately consider non-energy benefits such as health, productivity and comfort.
Investment in energy efficiency affects building and housing affordability, value and the state’s economy.

Conduct public interest research which improves the energy efficient design, construction and operation of buildings in California.

Develop strategies and technologies to:
 - reduce and manage loads;
- provide both energy efficiency and non-energy benefits
- increase building value through energy efficiency
Ensure program is connected to the market to maximize the transfer and adoption of  research results in the marketplace
Reduce overall building energy use by 25% by 2015 in both new and existing buildings

Industrial/Agricultural/Water End-Use Energy Efficiency Research
Ben Mehta

Affordability - Cost of electricity affects competitiveness of industry and agriculture
Reliability and Power Quality - Loss of production and downtime caused by poor power quality and reliability
Safety and Health - Toxic chemicals used in agriculture and water treatment are hazardous
Environmental - Cost of industrial waste material disposal and waste water treatment

Develop a collaborative RD&D program based on industry needs to enhance California’s industrial competitiveness by implementing energy efficient and environmentally superior technologies

Near Term ( 5 years):  Develop technologies to reduce industrial and agricultural water and energy consumption
Longer Term(10 years):  Develop a balanced portfolio of technologies to replace toxic chemicals, improve reliability/power quality and competitiveness of high impact business sectors

 Energy-Related Environmental Research
Kelly Birkinshaw

RD&D is needed to:
 - improve air quality and provide for growth in urban areas
 - develop alternative water supplies to address projected regional shortages
 - reduce the adverse effects of energy systems on plant and animal species and their habitat
 - better understand the regional effects of Global Climate Change

Develop cost effective approaches to  evaluating and resolving  environmental effects of energy production, delivery, and use in California, and explore how new energy applications and products can solve environmental problems

 - Reduce or mitigate to 50 percent of 1990 levels, the aggregated impact from energy facilities
 - Provide decision-makers with relevant, supportable information on Global Climate Change
 - Develop electro-technologies to address critical environmental problems

 Strategic Science and Technology
Tom Tanton

Increasing traffic on increasingly congested system
Disconnect between time of use and time of generation
diversity of electricity needs
Fragility of systems increasing
Opportunity for long term innovation

Improve system management and infrastructure
Provide cross-cutting and enabling technologies
Undertake long term, high risk/high benefit research and development

Facilitate distributed resources
Maintain system reliability
Enhance access
Improve safety
Improve "custom" usability
Encourage innovation