Utah's Energy Insider
A Publication of the Governor's Office of Energy Development

In this Issue     
Governor's Utah Energy Development Summit
2017 Legislative Session Round Up
OED Partners with SITLA to Launch New Education Campaign
Historic Coal Mining Tourism and Trail Series
Utah Unveils First Net Zero Community  

Governor's Sixth Annual Utah Energy Development Summit

May 3-4, 2017 | Grand America Hotel
By 2040, the world’s energy consumption will have increased by nearly 50 percent.  Advancing innovative solutions for energy and mineral development is key to powering our bright future.  Under the leadership of Governor Gary R. Herbert, the Summit will knit together the diverse perspectives of nearly one hundred speakers to chart new paths for the sector’s responsible growth at home and abroad.  The two-day conference and trade show is once again expected to draw more than 1,200 attendees, making it the largest event of its kind in the Intermountain West.

Twelve Reasons to Attend:
2017 Legislative Round Up

During the 2017 General Session of the legislature, the Governor's Office of Energy Development (OED) tracked dozens of bills that would potentially affect Utah’s energy and mining sectors. Among these many proposals, five of particular significance passed the legislature, and were ultimately signed into law by Gov. Herbert.  

•    SB 273 updated Utah’s Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy program (C-PACE) to encourage flexibility in how the financing tool is used property owners. C-PACE helps building owners finance a variety of energy improvements through a private financing agreement secured by a voluntary assessment on the real property. The new legislation establishes a statewide C-PACE District, administered by OED, that processes projects upon request by the local municipality. In addition, bonding is not longer required to raise capital instead, an assessment lien may be assigned to the third party lender.

•    SB 197 provides a sales and use-tax exemption to refineries that will produce Tier III fuels by 2021. Tier III fuels are an important step towards improving Utah’s air quality. The tax exemption begins in 2018, and will apply to machinery and equipment purchases related to the production of improved fuels. OED will be responsible for certifying eligibility of the refiners for the exemption. 

•    HB 23 will phase out the residential Renewable Energy Systems Tax Credit (RESTC). From a current limit of $2,000 for each system, the cap will be reduced by $400 each year after 2017, and end after 2021. This change was primarily driven by the growing fiscal impact of Utah’s rapidly expanding rooftop solar generation, which expanded by approximately 10,000 homes in 2016. 

•    HB 297 now allows Utah contract customers to purchase baseload renewable electricity from out of state.  Previously, the program was limited to renewable sources in Utah.  Geothermal generation is one example of baseload renewable electricity.

•    HCR 5 supports using a portion of the Volkswagen settlement to fund the replacement of Utah's 433 oldest diesel school buses with clean fuel vehicles.  The Volkswagen emissions test cheating allegation settlement directed $32 million to a variety of Utah air quality improvements, including school bus replacements. The resolution asks participating school districts to provide a 100 percent cost match for school bus replacements that utilize the settlement funding. 
OED Expands Education Initiative, Partners with SITLA to Launch New Campaign
       Funding the Future of Utah

OED is pleased to announce a partnership with the School and Institutional Trust Lands Administration (SITLA) to expand energy, minerals, and infrastructure education across Utah.  Under the leadership of Gov. Herbert, Dr. Laura Nelson, and SITLA director, David Ure, the offices forged the foundation for an education campaign that will utilize TV commercials, billboards, and social media advertisements. The goal is to foster a greater understanding of the role our rural communities play in the Wasatch Front's economy and high quality of life, as well as to teach about the importance of SITLA and their invaluable contributions to Utah's  school children. 

SITLA is an independent agency within state government that manages the 4.5 million acres of state lands.  SITLA transfers the revenue from mining and oil and gas sales on state lands into an endowment that is used to fund our state’s schools. The endowment is now greater than $2 billion. In addition SITLA funds land conservation and environmental improvement projects on state lands.  To learn more about SITLA, visit
Historic Coal Mining Tourism and Trail Series

The OED is leading a coalition of partners to develop a Historic Coal Mining Tourism and Trail Series in Carbon, Emery and Sevier counties to celebrate Utah's rich coal-mining heritage.   

Initial plans call for hundreds of miles of off highway vehicle (OHV) trails to allow riders to explore the state's historic mining sites.  Along the way, riders will be met with a series of information kiosks that will help them uncover the vast history of Utah's mining region.  
"Educating the public on Utah's mining history, and the contribution of our early energy pioneers is critical to understanding where our energy comes from today, and how we utilize our natural resources to benefit the greater good," said Jordan Clark, OED's managing director of development.

Current partners include the OED, the Utah Division of State History, Department of Natural Resources, Utah Division of Oil, Gas and Mining, Carbon County Commission, the Carbon County Office of Tourism (CCOT), and State Park Off Highway Vehicle Program (SPOHV).
Utah Unveils First Net Zero Community

Utah set a new benchmark in energy efficiency when Living Zenith, the Governor’s Office of Energy Development, and other key stakeholders cut the ribbon on the state’s first net zero community on Jan. 24, 2017.  
Constructed by Redfish Builders, each unit is made with high thermal barriers, efficient appliances, triple-paned windows, and LED lighting.  The homes are powered by a Wheeler Machinery Company solar photovoltaic system, which is designed with capacity to export surplus electricity to an onsite storage grid and to the local power grid, allowing homes to draw upon the resource during solar intermittency. 

“The Living Zenith project is a further demonstration of Utah’s leadership on energy innovation, delivering solutions to advance energy efficiency, address air quality, and meet the demands of our growing population,” said Dr. Laura Nelson, the Governor’s energy advisor.  “We’re proud to promote Governor Gary R. Herbert’s collaborative spirit across industry to continue to elevate Utah’s high quality of life.”
This project is a culmination of collaboration with the Governor’s Office of Energy Development, Salt Lake City’s Sustainability Department, WheelerCat, Portland Energy Conservation, Inc., Utah Clean Energy, the University of Utah, and other innovators seeking solutions. 
OED Advances Energy Efficiency 

Over the past quarter, OED’s managing director of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and energy education, Shawna Cuan, traveled around the state and country to highlight Utah’s energy efficiency accomplishments and challenges, including:

•    At the annual NASEO Energy Policy Outlook Conference in Washington, D.C., Shawna co-moderated a discussion between 10 western states to identify opportunities to advance building energy codes, utility grids, and EV market transformation. 

•    With Envision Utah, she facilitated public exercise at Draper’s Living Planet Aquarium where local citizens voiced their top priorities for the redevelopment of Draper and Point of the Mountain through a fun mapping activity. 

•    She moderated a net zero panel discussion at the Weber State Sustainability Summit. The panelists spoke on net zero benefits to the individual family and wider community.   

•    Builders, trades, and code officials attended Shawna’s presentation at the RESNET Building Performance Conference in Scottsdale, Arizona, to learn about the ongoing code adoption, implementation, and enforcement process in Utah.  Utah was one of the first states nationwide to adopt the 2015 energy code, which included the Energy Rating Index or ERI as a brand new pathway to comply with the code.
Governor's Energy Advisor Appointed Chair of
 Western Interstate Energy Board

In February, Dr. Laura Nelson was appointed the Chair of the Western Interstate Energy Board (WIEB). The WIEB is an organization of 11 Western States and three Canadian Provinces.  It aims to promote energy policy that is developed cooperatively among member states, provinces, and the federal government. 
Upcoming Events

Waxy Crude Workshop

April 18, 2017
Register Today

The 8th Annual Waxy Crude Workshop will discuss how to enhance the position of black and yellow wax as a higher quality and safer alternative to Canadian crude oil, and how to better connect Uinta Basin waxy crude with Salt Lake City refiners and other markets.

Governor's Energy Development Summit

May 3-4, 2017
Register Today

Energy Career Expo
June 14, 2017 
8 AM-4 PM
The Leonardo Museum

Hosted in conjunction with the Leonardo's Mind Riot energy-themed competition, the Energy Career Expo will be a dynamic opportunity for students to meet with professionals across Utah's energy sector through fun activity-based interactions and presentations to learn more about the many pathways into a successful energy career.
The County Seat: Energy and Development in Utah

On Mar. 10, Dr. Laura Nelson sat down with Chad Booth at the County Seat to discuss how the market is driving the energy economy in Utah, as well as the federal permitting process and the future of coal.
In The News

3 entities award grants to expand electric vehicle use in Utah 
The Utah Division of Air Quality has awarded $350,000 in grants to three entities to purchase electric and compressed natural gas vehicles, and to expand CNG refueling stations along the Wasatch Front. (read more)

Zinke: Interior Department in the 'energy business'
Newly confirmed Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke approved a $22 million coal lease for central Utah and made it clear his agency is in the "energy business." (read more)

Utah lawmakers offer $1.8 million tax break to refineries to help clean the air
Legislation encouraging Utah’s refineries to revamp their systems to produce low-sulfur Tier 3 fuels passed with overwhelming support the final week of the 2017 session in spite of the $1.8 million tax break it promises. (read more)

Perry Sworn in as 14th Secretary of United States Department of Energy 
Former Texas Governor Rick Perry was sworn in on March 2, 2017, as the 14th Secretary of the United States Department of Energy. (read more)

Report: Solar jobs growth hot in Utah, more than twice national average
A new report shows Utah's solar industry was sizzling hot last year, adding jobs at more than twice the national rate — growing 65 percent from 2015 to 2016. (read more)
OED's Communication Director Earns NYU Global Affairs Certificate
OED's communications and public affairs director, Meghan Stettler, has earned a two year certificate in Global Affairs from New York University, with an emphasis on energy.  Her courses detailed foreign policy, energy security, resilient communities, the oil crisis, and emerging markets, among others.   

In late 2016, Ms. Stettler also earned a Global Business Management certificate from Salt Lake Community College (SLCC). The school's Global Business Center was recently honored with the President’s “E” Award at a ceremony in Washington, DC.  The award is the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.
Utah Energy Workforce Scholarships Announced!
In Fall 2016, OED in partnership with Chevron, announced the new Utah Energy Workforce Scholarship Program, providing $5,000 scholarships to one student in each of Utah's four congressional districts.  Students were required to submit a short film, highlighting an aspect of Utah's energy and minerals workforce.  
The following students will be honored at the Governor's Energy Development Summit on May 3 by Mitra Kaschanchi, Chevron's Salt Lake Refinery Manager.
Mitra Kaschanchi


Utah Energy Office

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Copyright © 2017 Governor's Office of Energy Development, All rights reserved.  Q4 2015 Newsletter
Governor's Office of Energy Development:
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 144845 SLC, UT 84114-4845
Phone: 801.538.8732

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