Archive for the ‘Steve’s State’ Category

ACRP Releases HMMH-authored Report on Energy Projects and Airports and Airspace

Friday, April 25th, 2014

by Stephen Barrett

HMMH is pleased to inform clients and colleagues of the official release of Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) Report 108 “Energy Technologies Compatibility with Airports and Airspace.” This report is the first in a series of ACRP Reports on energy and airports that are expected for release in the next year. The HMMH-authored report reviews the aviation industry’s experience with a variety of energy technologies including solar, wind, oil and gas drilling, and traditional electricity generation and transmission, and provides guidance for future projects to avoid impacts on airports and airspace. The report is timely given the country’s focus on domestic energy production to serve economic and national security interests and to diversify energy generation sources toward cleaner fuels, including renewables. The guidance will also help airports as they consider opportunities to lease out underutilized non-aeronautical property for energy production.

ACRP Report 108

BRIGHT IDEAS! – How airports can obtain a rebate from the Federal Government for new construction or renovations – an EXCERPT FROM THE AAAE ENERGY FORUM, March 7, 2014

Tuesday, March 25th, 2014

by Steve Barrett

I was at the AAAE Energy Forum in San Diego a few weeks back.  The forum is a lesser known gathering of the AAAE community every two years where participants focus exclusively on energy issues.  I was fortunate enough to moderate a roundtable segment of the program where funding of energy efficiency technologies was discussed.  Topics included experience with Energy Services Companies (ESCOs), utility rebates, tax credits, and potential funding from the FAA.  

One of the real gems from the conference was a discussion of the 179d Tax Deduction Program, which allows designers to file energy efficiency projects for as much as a 20% tax deduction.  Now your first reaction is likely that airports, as government entities, cannot take a tax deduction because they don’t pay taxes.  And you would be correct.  However, the Internal Revenue Service allows government entities, including airports, to formally assign the tax benefit to a private entity involved in the project construction that can take advantage of and monetize the tax deduction.  

So what type of work is eligible for a tax deduction? 

Answer: any new construction or major renovation completed within the past three years that included energy code improvements that are above the ASHRAE 90.1-2001 Standard.  A simple example is changing out all your traditional lighting in a parking garage with LEDs.  20% of the cost of that project can be returned to the airport and project consultant through the 179d Program.  A real world example is occurring at Miami-Dade International Airport which installed a new central power plant and will be receiving a $1.4m credit for the work.  If you are interested in learning more, please send me an email.

Tidal Energy Project Report Published

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013

by Steve Barrett

HMMH’s technical report entitled “Environmental Effects of Sediment Transport Alteration and Impacts on Protected Species: Edgartown Tidal Energy Project” has been published at www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/1059377/ by the U. S. Department of Energy.

The Town of Edgartown Massachusetts holds a permit from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) providing it with exclusive rights to develop a tidal energy project in Muskeget Channel. Funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy, HMMH, on behalf of the Town, is managing a comprehensive study of the marine environment in Muskeget Channel and assessing the potential impacts of the tidal project on indicator species and habitats. HMMH is also working under separate state funding with the New England Marine Renewable Energy Center at the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth (UMASS-D) to undertake siting and engineering studies as funding becomes available.

Read more about this project on our website.

Extraordinary Times for Renewable Energy!

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

by Steve Barrett

We are breathing rarified air these days thanks to renewable energy.  And the proof is in statistics. 

Get this:

  • 49% of all new electricity generation in the United States in 2012 came from renewable energy. 
  • 100% of new generation in January 2013 was from renewables!

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) releases a monthly report of new energy infrastructure that has been placed in service as well as an official compilation for each calendar year.  The updates include miles of new electric transmission lines, number of new hydropower projects, miles of natural gas pipelines, and MW of new electric power generation.  And airports are playing a significant role particular in solar power as evidenced by these projects that went into service over the past 13 months:

1)      3.6 MW Phase 2 Lakeland Regional Airport Solar Project expansion in Polk County, Florida. The Lakeland Regional Airport Solar has a total capacity of 6.3 MW.

2)      3 MW Pearson County Airport Solar Project in Timberlake North Carolina.  The amount of electricity being produced is equivalent to 360 households.

3)      3 MW Chicago-Rockford International Airport in Rockford, Illinois.   This is the first phase of what will be a 62 MW project that will produce enough power for 60,000 homes.

4)      FedEx developed a 3.6 MW project on its facilities at Newark Liberty International Airport which is providing 15% of its electricity needs.  See http://www.hmmh.com/.

Given the critical importance to our nation of the safety of air travel, the FAA is looking very closely at solar projects to make sure that they will not generate glare that might cause a negative impact on air traffic controllers and pilots.  HMMH provided reflectivity studies for the Chicago-Rockford and FedEx Projects, which otherwise would not have received the FAA’s approval.  We are also working with the Department of Energy’s Sandia National Laboratories on cutting edge research associated with solar glare under Airport Cooperative Research Project 02-38, Guidebook for Energy Projects’ Compatibility with Airports and Airspace.  As we accumulate knowledge about siting compatibility, expect to see more renewable energy projects at airports and across the country.

Solar Farm at Indianapolis International Airport

Monday, February 11th, 2013

by Steve Barrett

One of the largest solar farms at an airport in the world is being proposed at Indianapolis International Airport.  A recent news story publicized the project. The project, however, has been in the works for a few years and will likely be implemented in several phases.  Recent news is primarily related to the start of construction on Phase I which is proposed in the southwest area of the airport near the I-70 interchange.  In the summer of 2010 when the Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) was considering the solar opportunity presented by the local utility and private developers, IAA engaged HMMH to assess the potential impacts of the proposed project on airspace safety.  HMMH completed a study of reflectivity, communications systems interference, and physical obstruction with Part 77 surfaces.  Due to the project’s location southwest of the air traffic control tower, no glare impacts were predicted.  Based in part on our analysis, IAA proceeded with a procurement process to select a private developer who would lease airport land and own and operate the solar farm.  HMMH was also engaged by the project developer to conduct a more detailed analysis on impacts from a modified design on both the control tower and arriving aircraft.  The IAA filed a Form 7460 with the FAA and FAA issued a determination of no hazard in the summer of 2012.  HMMH has subsequently been engaged by IAA to evaluate the Phase II location.  The Indianapolis Airport Solar Farm is a great example of the potential financial benefits available to airports in leasing underutilized lands for renewable energy development.

 

Chicago Rockford International Airport

Chicago Rockford International Airport Solar Farm