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Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board invests in energy efficiency incentives offered by the Lewis County Public Utility District

December 12, 2018

The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board (“Weatherization Board”) and the Lewis County Public Utility District (“District”) are teaming up for a second time to support energy efficiency programs available to District customers. The Weatherization Board has approved a grant amount of $1,080,000 to the District to provide qualified customers with technology to improve the efficiency, comfort and monthly expenditures on space heating and cooling that will provide both energy and financial savings over many years.

The funding from the Weatherization Board will supplement other financial resources available to the District and will build upon the energy efficiency improvements leveraged by funding the District received from the Weatherization Board in 2017 and 2018 which totaled approximately $1.6 million dollars. As the District continues to promote low-income ductless heat pumps and weatherization programs for qualified customers, they are also committed to adding a focus to find and incentivize additional cost-effective improvements for local K-12 facilities to support qualifying lighting, weatherization and HVAC measures for schools served by the District.

The Weatherization Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. The Mission of the Weatherization Board is to provide funding of projects to improve energy efficiency and weatherization within Lewis County and South Thurston County.

“There has been a steady flow of grant applications to the Weatherization Board “said Mickey Dreher, Board member.  “Early on it became very apparent that energy efficiency upgrades are needed in homes, schools, and businesses across our community.  As a Board we continue to see that the transition funding dollars can be leveraged through various programs and based on what the PUD was able to achieve with their first grant, the Board fully supported their most recent application.”

Lewis County Public Utility District is a municipal corporation of the State of Washington, formed by the people of Lewis County to provide electric service. The District maintains an Energy Services department that offers customers a variety of residential, commercial and industrial energy efficiency programs, including free energy audits, which help customers understand their energy usage, and what options they may be able to implement to reduce that usage.

“Our PUD appreciates the opportunity to build upon the successes of the previous grant award” said Dean Dahlin, Lewis PUD Board President. “Another great opportunity to work with the weatherization board to invest these dollars with the maximum benefit to our community…. helping lower energy usage and increase comfort for customers for years to come.  Our commissioners and staff would like to thank the weatherization board for entrusting us with these funds.”

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023. The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, businesses, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

For information on the PUD’s grant program, and whether you may qualify for incentives, please contact the District’s energy services department at (360) 345-1493, or energyservices@lcpud.org

Media Inquiries:                                                          

 

Email: coaltransitionboards@transalta.com

 

 

TransAlta’s Coal Transition Board funds Washington State’s first electric school bus and solar project for Franklin Pierce School District

Grants will reduce energy and carbon emissions while putting dollars back into the school district

Centralia, (October 30, 2018) – The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board (‘CCTGETB’) is pleased to announce it has approved grants to the Franklin Pierce School District (‘the District’) to reduce energy and carbon emissions – putting dollars back into the school district’s general funds. The District will be receiving two grants, one totaling $330,155 to purchase Washington State’s first electric school bus and another award in the amount of $65,858 to install a 20-kilowatt (kW) Washington-made solar electricity generation system at the Keithley Middle School.  These projects will provide renewable energy for the Franklin Pierce School District, reduce carbon emissions and provide an educational opportunity for students and educators, while investing in the District.

“Change happens over time, not overnight. The decision by the District to move their bus fleet from diesel to electric-powered and combine that effort with a solar project makes these grants very exciting for the members of the Board and makes an important move for the District towards renewable energy,” said Conrad Wieclaw, board member.

“The projects will save the school district costs, maintenance, carbon emissions and provide an educational energy dashboard for students and educators. Congratulations to the Franklin Pierce District for taking steps to make change happen.”

The Energy Technology Board was formed as a result of the 2011 agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington. This agreement, allowed Centralia to plan to move away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025. TransAlta is investing $55 million into Lewis and South Thurston Counties and the state of Washington through the Coal Transition Boards.

“The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Board’s investment in Franklin Pierce Schools represents and incredible opportunity for our district,” says Joel Zylstra, Franklin Pierce School District.

“This investment reflects our commitment to increasing efficiency, providing opportunities for students to link classroom learning with everyday activities, and our ongoing desire to be good stewards of our natural resources.”

The funds from CCTGETB will support the District in launching the state’s first full-size electric school bus, which will be a pilot in their goal to replace all school busses with electric busses. The funding will also assist with the cost of installing a level two charging station for the electric bus. The District is working with Blue Bird manufacturers to ensure the bus will meet all Washington State regulations and Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction standards and anticipates delivery in early Spring of 2019.

In the meantime, the installation of a 20kW solar electric generation system at the Keithley Middle School will begin. This renewable energy project will support the District’s efforts to reduce energy consumption and will connect to an energy dashboard that will allow students to engage with the system, learn more about alternative energy and understand how the engineering behind the technology works.

The Franklin Pierce School District was established in 1949 and located in Pierce County. The District proudly serves 8,000 students from preschool to grade 12 in a variety of settings including an early learning center, eight elementary schools, two middle schools, and one alternative high school. The mission of the District is to provide students an engaging educational environment, built upon proven academics and high standard, resulting in successful and contributing citizens.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023.  The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

For more information on the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards visit: http://cctgrants.com

TransAlta’s Coal Transition Board funds $3.2 Million in Solar Projects

Grants support Washington’s goal of producing new clean, renewable energy

Centralia, (October 29, 2018) The TransAlta Centralia Coal Transition Grants Energy Technology Board is pleased to announce approval to fund 18 proposed solar projects with a total investment of $3.2 million throughout the state of Washington. Benefiting a rural hospital, public school districts, and communities across the state, the solar projects range in size from 16kW to 100kW.

This significant investment in local solar projects around the state will improve the sustainability of the power requirements for these towns, schools and hospital. It is projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 35,000 tons over the life of these systems. The Board is pleased to be part of developing solar resources in Washington.

Under the historic agreement between TransAlta and the State of Washington to transition the Centralia plant off coal, the company is investing $55 million into the state of Washington with $25 million specifically targeting energy technologies with the potential to create considerable energy, air quality, haze or other environmental benefits for the state of Washington.

“TransAlta has more than 100 years of experience developing, owning and operating renewable power generation facilities,” said Bob Nelson, President of TransAlta USA. “We are meeting today’s power needs while advancing the cleaner energy technologies of tomorrow. The $25-million TransAlta is investing in the state of Washington to advance renewable energy projects, such as these 18 solar projects, is part of a shared vision with the Centralia Coal Transition Boards, the Energy Technology Board and of course the successful applicants. Congratulations to our partners on this important milestone.

Solar Projects approved:

Applicant Funding Amount Size
Morton General Hospital 123,963 48kW
Olympia School District 325,000 24kW & 57.6kW
City of Napavine 138,912 40kW
Rainier School District 260,951 35.7kW & 72kW
Eatonville School District 96,049 30kW
Tumwater School District 99,060 34kW
City of Winlock 82,732 16kW
Napavine School District 107,291 40kW
City of Mossyrock 69,935 20kW
Town of Fairfield 290,000 96kW
City of Granger 165,000 50kW
City of Pateros 96,000 29.1kW
City of Clarkston 280,000 100kW
Town of Garfield 260,000 81kW
Town of Reardan 130,000 53kW
Town of Darrington 300,000 32.9kW & 56.16kW
Colville School District 230,000 100kW
Town of Washtucna 185,000 50kW

 

“These solar projects will provide a renewable source of energy and provide a great educational tool for school districts and communities,” said Lori Schmitt, board member. “When reviewing the applications, it was also important to see that the energy savings, production credits and incentives can be used to support other aspects of the organization’s budgets. All projects will be utilizing made in Washington equipment and will provide for job opportunities.”

Total funding for these projects remains subject to applicants receiving grants from the Washington State Department of Commerce, currently under consideration, as well as other funding partners to complete the projects.

For a complete list of projects funded by the Centralia Coal Transition Boards visit  https://cctgrants.com/category/grant-recipients/.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023.  The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

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Centralia Coal Transition Weatherization Board invests in energy efficiency and healthy home measures

For immediate release

Centralia, (October 24, 2018) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Weatherization Board is pleased to announce it has approved a second grant award to the Community Action Council of Lewis, Mason & Thurston Counties (“CAC”). CAC received the very first Weatherization Board grant back in April 2016 in the amount of $727,433 to support weatherization services in Lewis County and South Thurston County. Today, the board announces the award of $700,000 to give eligible residents of Lewis and South Thurston counties an opportunity to improve heating and energy-saving efficiencies while creating a safer and healthier home for the occupants.

The Weatherization Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025.

“The board members have been pleased with the services CAC is providing to the community and is looking forward to building on our partnership with CAC,” said Marc Read, Board member. “CAC will continue to provide energy efficiency opportunities for local families and with this investment, they will be formally applying “Healthy Homes” measures to qualified and identified homes.”

The Community Action Council of Lewis, Mason & Thurston Counties is a private non-profit 501(c) 3 corporation serving the Lewis, Mason & Thurston County communities since 1966. The overall goal of CAC is to identify needs in the low-income section of the community and administer diverse services in a cost-efficient and effective manner. The funding received from this grant will be leveraged with additional sources of funding from federal, state, local and private sources.

“We are excited about our continued partnership with the Centralia Coal Transition Board to maintain weatherization services in the community”, said John Walsh, CAC Chief Executive Officer. “This illustrates the commitment and investment by the Board to continue to provide the long-term benefits of safer, healthier and more energy efficient homes in our community. “

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due Dec. 31, 2023.  The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund education, retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.

Contact:  coaltransitionboards@transalta.com                                                                                 

 Coal Transition Board Funds Student Achievement Initiative

Contact: coaltransitionboards@transalta.com    

Grant will build on academic excellence while strengthening our local economy

Centralia, (October 11, 2018) The Centralia Coal Transition Grants Economic & Community Development Board (“ECD Board”) is pleased to announce it has approved a $200,000 grant to the Chehalis Foundation to support an initiative to further post-secondary education opportunities for youth. The initiative is intended to support the Foundation’s goal to have 60% of 2022 Chehalis graduates go on to earn a technical or college degree or acceptance into an apprenticeship to make them career ready.

“The Chehalis school district along with Centralia College are teaming to dramatically increase the number of local students going on to earn vocational or college degrees after high school through the Student Achievement Initiative (SAI)” said Tim Sayler, Chehalis Foundation President. “Ninety percent of the W.F. West class of 2018 were admitted to college or vocational school. The Chehalis Foundation is very grateful for the Centralia Coal Transition Board donation of $200,000 toward the SAI. We will use these funds strategically to match part of the Orin Smith endowment so that the funds will go twice as far.”

The Chehalis Foundation pursues academic excellence in Chehalis schools and supports the City of Chehalis. The Beyond K-12 Student Achievement Initiative aims to prepare every W.F. West graduate to be career and college ready. To achieve this goal, the Chehalis Foundation partners with the Chehalis School District, Centralia College, the Orin Smith Family Foundation and community donors.

“The partnerships the Chehalis Foundation has formed over the years and their investments are helping to ensure that when students graduate from high school, they have a direction toward a career”, said Jeff Yanish, ECD Board member. “Business leaders in our state have shown support for the Student Achievement Initiative citing that the initiative directly ties to economic development because many of these students will become tomorrow’s local workforce. The better their K-12 education and the more they progress in vocational schools or college the more attractive our area will be to employers. We see this opportunity not only as supporting education but building on academic excellence through various community partnerships and strengthening our local economy.”

The ECD Board was formed as a result of the 2011 Agreement between TransAlta and the state of Washington to transition the Centralia plant away from coal-fired operations with one unit shutting down in December 2020 and the second unit in December 2025.

Overview of the Centralia Coal Transition Funding Boards:

Annual payments for the funding boards began in 2012 with the last payment due December 31, 2023.  The opportunity to start flowing dollars into projects became effective December 31, 2015.

Weatherization Board ($10M): established to fund energy efficiency and weatherization for the residents, employees, business, non-profit organizations and local governments within Lewis County and South Thurston County; up to $1 million shall be allocated to fund residential energy efficiency and weatherization measures for low-income and moderate-income residents of Lewis County and South Thurston County;

Economic & Community Development Board ($20M): established to fund retraining, economic development, and community enhancement; at least $5M shall be allocated to fund education, retraining and economic development specifically targeting the needs of workers displaced from the Centralia facility;

Energy Technology Board ($25M): established to fund energy technologies with the potential to create environmental benefits to the state of Washington.