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RELEASE DATE: December 04, 2000

Department of Energy Unveils Strategic Plan For Expanding Distributed Energy Resources

Plan Will Advance Environmental and Electricity Reliability Goals

The Department of Energy released its "Strategic Plan for Distributed Energy Resources," outlining a national effort to develop clean, reliable and affordable distributed energy technologies over the next two decades. Undersecretary of Energy Ernest J. Moniz announced the details of the Strategic Plan at today's session of the department's Advanced Turbine Systems Annual Program Review.

"This strategic plan provides for the first time a framework for integrating the department's many programs related to distributed energy resources, and for laying the groundwork for a system that will allow industrial, commercial and residential customers to choose from a diverse array of distributed energy resource products and services," Undersecretary Moniz said. "The Energy Department is helping to provide advanced technologies and energy efficiency improvements to secure a clean energy future for the American people."

In the short term, the Strategic Plan initially focuses on developing "next generation" distributed energy technologies and addressing the institutional and regulatory barriers that interfere with the development of distributed energy resources.

Six separate strategic areas are addressed under the plan:

  • Direct and coordinate a diverse portfolio of research, development and demonstration (RD&D) investments in distributed natural gas technologies including advanced turbines and microturbines, cooling, heating and power systems, fuel cell systems, hybrid systems and natural gas engines;

  • Conduct supporting RD&D in enabling technologies, including combustion systems, fuel processing, hydrogen energy systems, materials and manufacturing, power electronics and sensors and controls;

  • Direct and coordinate a diverse portfolio of RD&D in energy generation and delivery systems architecture for distributed energy resources, including district energy, energy storage, grid interconnection, modeling and simulation tools, power parks and mini-grids, superconducting materials for electric systems and transmission and distribution;

  • Coordinate activities with RD&D in renewable energy development such as concentrating solar power and solar buildings systems, geothermal, photovoltaic systems and wind energy;

  • Establish collaborative technology transfer partnerships with industry, state agencies, universities and national laboratories, including multi-year plans, industry visions and technology roadmaps; cost shared research, development and demonstration projects and cost shared technology transfer activities; and

  • Conduct systems integration, implementation and outreach activities aimed at addressing infrastructure, institutional and regulatory needs, including building codes and standards; environmental permitting and siting; Federal Energy Management Program; International President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology; standardized interconnection protocols; state initiatives; tax provisions and utility restructuring.

"The Strategic Plan for Distributed Energy Resources" can be found on the Internet at www.eren.doe.gov/der.

Media Contact: John B. Townsend II, 202/586-5806

Release No. R-00-299