Contact: Priscilla Knight, 703-392-1580, firstname.lastname@example.org
NORTHERN VIRGINIA ― The United States Department of Energy has selected the Northern Virginia Electric Cooperative for a $5 million smart grid investment grant. NOVEC received notice from DOE on Oct. 27, 2009 ― the same day President Obama announced in Arcadia, Florida, that the federal government would award grants to 100 electric utilities and industries totaling $3.4 billion for technology to modernize the nation's power grid.
DOE selected NOVEC’s Electric Distribution System Automation Program from 400 grant applications submitted from across the nation. The selected projects will be funded by the February 2009 American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. NOVEC will match the grant money for its $10 million program.
Stan Feuerberg, NOVEC president and CEO, says, “A successful completion of this DOE grant process will provide long-term benefits and tangible savings to our customers."
The DOE Office of Electricity Delivery and Energy Reliability will meet with NOVEC in November to discuss and negotiate the terms of the award as proposed in NOVEC’s application.
Jim Moxley, NOVEC senior vice president, administration, substations and telecommunications, and his team prepared the application. After receiving notification from DOE, Moxley said, “This federal stimulus grant will help NOVEC accelerate the modernization of its electric distribution system and, more importantly, provide critical infrastructure for the future deployment of other smart grid technology.”
Moxley says NOVEC’s industry partners expect that the Co-op’s smart grid plan will create at least 15 jobs in the manufacturing facilities that will produce the equipment NOVEC will deploy. The firms which will install the equipment estimate that approximately 55 jobs will be preserved during the three-year grant performance period.
Moxley says NOVEC developed a smart grid plan in 2005 and began deployment in 2007 to better serve its 142,500 customer-owners in Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, Fauquier, Stafford, and Clarke counties, and the City of Manassas Park.
According to Moxley, the grant will spur the replacement of older, technically obsolete equipment with digital-based, smart grid equipment. He says the funds will help NOVEC expand its fiber optic network. Moxley notes that the upgrades will allow NOVEC to improve power quality, reduce electricity losses through the distribution system, and save more than $100,000 annually in distribution and substation maintenance. By lowering peak demand with new equipment, Moxley estimates that the Co-op will save approximately $600,000 annually in power costs and defer the need for new peak-generation power capacity.
Feuerberg thanks industry contractors and elected officials who wrote letters of endorsement and urged DOE to approve NOVEC’s grant request. “NOVEC appreciates their efforts. With their help, NOVEC will help improve the nation’s electrical grid.”Government Officials Who Wrote Letters of Support for NOVEC’s Smart Grid Application:
- Gerry Connolly, U. S. congressman, 11th district
- George Barker, 39th senatorial district
- Charles Colgan, 29th senatorial district
- Mark Herring, 33rd senatorial district
- Chuck Caputo, delegate, 67th district
- Tim Hugo, delegate, 40th district
- L. Scott Lingamfelter, delegate, 31st district
- Jackson Miller, delegate, 50th district
- Paul Nichols, delegate, 51st district
- David Poisson, delegate, 32nd district
- Sharon Bulova, chairman, Fairfax County Board of Supervisors
- Corey Stewart, chairman, Prince William County Board of Supervisors, on behalf of the Board of Supervisors
- Scott York, chairman, Loudoun County Board of Supervisors
- Stephen Walz, advisor, energy policy, Governor Tim Kaine