AUSTIN, Texas, April 9, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Rising concerns about continued Texas drought are making headlines. San Antonio has set a goal of cutting outdoor water usage in half with heavy water usage fines projected to go into effect as soon as May. Texas drought is causing strain in agricultural industries such as cattle, rice and wheat. Texas Combined Heat and Power Initiative (TXCHPI) is working to provide policy leaders solutions to ease water shortages and improve supply of power for Texas with CHP / cogeneration technology that reduces water needed for energy production. CHP systems also increase use of natural gas. The Texas natural gas industry supports nearly 12 percent of total employment and contributes more than $100 billion to the Texas economy each year.
"Concerns about the adequacy of our power supply and ongoing water shortage have lead Texas to a policy crossroads," said Paul Cauduro, Executive Director, TXCHPI. "Our solution is to remove regulatory barriers and treat CHP systems equally in the tax code in order to create a wave of CHP developments in the state's industrial and commercial sector." Research has determined that increasing CHP from 20 to 35% of total electricity generation Texas by 2025 would add roughly 14,000MW to the Texas grid while conserving roughly 161 billion gallons of water used in generation of electricity relative to "Business-as-Usual" projections.
TXCHPI supports House Bill (HB) 2049, legislation currently being considered by the Texas Legislature. The bill would allow cogeneration facilities to sell electricity and thermal energy to the same customer thereby maximizing the efficiency of the cogenerating facilities while providing secure and reliable power to users at the location where it is needed without power transmission and distribution issues or line losses. Other bills supported by TXCHPI include:
- HB 1864 which would authorize the State Energy Conservation Office (SECO) to develop guidelines for how CHP is evaluated, as currently required by law, prior to the construction or renovation of government facilities deemed to be "critical" for emergency preparedness and emergency response operations. Critical facilities include hospitals, prisons, commands centers and data centers.
- HB 2074 which would include CHP in the Texas margin tax exemptions that currently exist for renewable energy sources by allowing a corporation to deduct a small portion of the CHP system investment from their state margins tax.
- HB 1094 that makes needed changes to the long-term project financing mechanism known as Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) allowing owner and third-party operated CHP and waste heat recovery projects on commercial and industry property.
About the TXCHPI:
The Texas Combined Heat & Power Initiative (TXCHPI) is a non-profit association of business interests that supports clean, energy-efficient, CHP technology applications in industrial, commercial and institutional settings. TXCHPI champions CHP as the most effective, economical and environmentally sensible energy option for Texas.
Source: Texas Combined Heat & Power Initiative