Community, Industry, and Government Partners Benefit from Berkeley Lab Technical Assistance

May 2, 2024

As the nation shifts to clean energy, many communities, businesses, and government agencies face a head-spinning number of technology, operational, and policy decisions. Technical assistance experts at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) help identify solutions that are most cost-effective and viable for each individual partner, in addition to increasing energy efficiency and renewable energy use, and reducing polluting emissions.

Berkeley Lab’s Energy Technologies Area (ETA) researchers offer partners a combination of deep scientific knowledge, access to vast data collections, unmatched analytical skills and tools, and extensive understanding of stakeholder challenges and priorities. This has led manufacturers to save on factory electricity bills, transit agencies to deploy net-zero-emission vehicles, builders to secure financing for energy efficient developments, and legislators to establish policy that advances energy equity ― all while delivering broader benefits for communities and businesses.

“Our team’s independent, interdisciplinary analyses decrease risks and challenges for partners and boost their potential for success,” said ETA Associate Laboratory Director Mary Ann Piette. “Ultimately, this makes it possible for more innovative clean energy solutions to be deployed in an accelerated time frame.”

Berkeley Lab’s ETA researchers work with partners on projects involving the built environment, the power grid, energy storage systems, and transportation. Unbiased scientific input helps decision makers strengthen initiatives from early planning and design stages through implementation and scale up.

Recent Berkeley Lab technical assistance projects have included:

  • Developing standardized policy analysis methods to inform Building Performance Standards in cities and states, in close collaboration with these jurisdictions, non-governmental, and industry organizations
  • Identifying best practices in energy efficiency financing to improve loan performance for institutions such as JP Morgan and Connecticut Green Bank
  • Producing energy savings measurement guidance for the energy service industry in partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP)
  • Supporting DOE’s Better Climate Challenge partners to achieve 50% emissions reductions in their portfolios over a ten-year period, and to create a nationwide knowledge hub
  • Evaluating clean energy solutions such as microgrids for small and remote communities as part of DOE’s Energy Transitions Initiative Partnership Program (ETIPP)
  • Providing support to recipients of DOE’s Connected Communities funding for deployment of building-to-grid integration projects
  • Partnering with the Office of State and Community Energy Programs (SCEP) to advise states on designing revolving loan funds to support energy efficiency projects and improve air quality in schools through the Efficient and Healthy Schools Program
  • Helping participants in the Energy Improvements in Rural or Remote Areas (ERA) initiative boost resilience, safety, reliability, and availability of energy systems; reduce the adverse impacts of energy generation; and improve energy equity
  • Working with the Clean Energy to Communities (C2C) partnerships program, an initiative designed to support local decarbonization strategies in projects that span Illinois, Colorado, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, the Delaware Valley, Alaska, and Hawaii.

Berkeley Lab has advised more than 35 states in areas ranging from grid planning to energy efficiency, distributed energy resources, renewable energy, energy equity, grid resilience and reliability, electricity rates and regulation, and more. The lab often collaborates on technical assistance projects with national, regional, and state advocacy and regulatory organizations.

“Technical assistance is about more than technology,” said Piette. “It’s about making sure that the ultimate impact that technology has on people in the real world is significant and positive.”

Visit the website to learn more about the Berkeley Lab’s technical assistance for government agencies, utilities, industry, and business operations, along with other ETA initiatives.