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[California Energy Commission Letterhead]

Notice of Meeting
PIER Program Advisory Board

The California Energy Commission (Energy Commission) will conduct the first meeting of the Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) Program Advisory Board on

9:30 a.m.
1516 Ninth Street
First Floor, Hearing Room A
Sacramento, California
(Wheelchair Accessible)

Electronic copies of the agenda and this notice are available on the Energy Commission's website at www.energy.ca.gov/pier/notices/.


The purpose of this public meeting is to convene the Public Interest Energy Research Program Advisory Board. The Board is chaired by Energy Commissioner Arthur Rosenfeld. The role of the advisory board is to provide advice and strategic guidance in the planning and funding of public interest energy research and development administered by the Energy Commission. The advisory board shall make recommendations to guide the Energy Commission's selection of programs and projects to be funded. Specific roles of this advisory board will be to review and provide advice on establishing a public interest research development & demonstration portfolio that provides tangible benefits to California's electricity and natural gas consumers, within the broader context of national and international efforts to address energy research demonstration & development needs and opportunities.

At this meeting the Board will be introduced to the Energy Commission's PIER Program, some specific research development & demonstration research activities and accomplishments, and strategic issues facing the program.


In 2006, Senate Bill 1250 (Perata, Chapter 512, Statutes of 2006) was passed that, in part, states "The commission shall regularly convene an advisory board that shall make recommendations to guide the commission's selection of programs and projects to be fundedÉ" for public interest research and development. The advisory board meeting is in response to this mandate and has been formed to assist the Energy Commission in implementing these public interest research programs.

The Energy Commission's PIER Program, originally established in 1996, supports energy research, development and demonstration projects that will help improve the quality of life in California by bringing environmentally safe, affordable and reliable energy services and products to the marketplace. The PIER Program annually awards about $80 million to conduct the most promising public interest energy research by partnering with individuals, businesses, utilities, and public or private research institutions. As provided in SB 1250, the general goal of the program is to develop, and help bring to market, energy technologies that provide increased environmental benefits, greater system reliability, and lower system costs, and that provide tangible benefits to electric utility customers through the following investments:

  • Advanced transportation technologies that reduce air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions beyond applicable standards, and that benefit electricity and natural gas ratepayers.

  • Increased energy efficiency in buildings, appliances, lighting, and other applications beyond applicable standards, and that benefit electric utility customers.

  • Advanced electricity generation technologies that exceed applicable standards to increase reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from electricity generation, and that benefit electric utility customers.

  • Advanced electricity technologies that reduce or eliminate consumption of water or other finite resources, increase use of renewable energy resources, or improve transmission or distribution of electricity generated from renewable energy resources.

In 2005, the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), (Decision 04-08-010), designated the Energy Commission as Administrator of the Public Interest Energy Research Natural Gas (PIER NG) Program. The Decision defines public interest gas RD&D activities as those which "are directed towards developing science or technology, 1) the benefits of which accrue to California citizens and 2) are not adequately addressed by competitive or regulated entities." The CPUC established the following criteria for public interest gas R&D projects: 1) focus on energy efficiency, renewable technologies, conservation and environmental issues; 2) support State Energy policy; 3) offer a reasonable probability of providing benefits to the general public, and 4) consider opportunities for collaboration and co funding opportunities with other entities. SB 76 (Committee on Budget and Fiscal Review, Chapter 91, Statutes of 2005), also passed in 2005, granted the Energy Commission authority to expend PIER electricity and natural gas funds on transportation RD&D.

The PIER Program Advisory Board will review PIER funded activities and provide the Energy Commission with advice and recommendations for the PIER program related to its focus on public interest research consistent with the goals established by SB 1250 (Perata, 2006); its vision for the state's energy RD&D needs; its funding priorities; the identification of research needs and promising research initiatives; and mechanisms for broader application of promising new technologies and knowledge resulting from the Energy Commission's PIER RD&D initiatives.

Public Participation

The Energy Commission's Public Adviser Office provides the public assistance in participating in Energy Commission activities. If you want information on how to participate in this forum, please contact the Public Adviser's Office at (916) 654-4489 or toll free at (800) 822-6228, by FAX at (916) 654-4493, or by e-mail at pao@energy.state.ca. If you have a disability and require assistance to participate, please contact Lou Quiroz at (916) 654-5146 at least five days in advance.

Please direct all news media inquiries to Claudia Chandler, Assistant Executive Director, at (916) 654-4989, or by email at mediaoffice@energy.state.ca.

For technical questions on the project, please email Kelly LaFave at klafave@energy.state.ca.

Date Posted: January 10, 2008

Note: California Energy Commission's formal name is State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission.

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