Senate Bill 5 (77R) / Senate Bill 12 (80R)
This Bill was updated by Senate Bill 898 (82nd R).
In 2001, the 77th Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 5 (SB5), also known as the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan, to amend the Texas Health and Safety Code. The legislation required ambitious, fundamental changes in energy use to help the state comply with federal Clean Air Act standards. It applied to all political subdivisions within 38 designated counties, later expanded to 41 counties.
In 2007, the 80th Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 12 (SB12) which among other things extended the timeline set in SB5 for emission reductions. Where SB5 required political subdivisions to reduce their electrical consumption by five percent (5%) for five years beginning January 1, 2002, the SB 12 legislation requires that such entities establish a goal to make the five percent (5%) reductions each year for six years, effective September 1, 2007.
SB12 amended the Health and Safety Code Section 388.005, in part, by requiring affected political subdivisions to: implement all cost-effective energy-efficiency measures, establish a goal to reduce electricity consumption by 5 percent each year for 6 years, and report efforts and progress annually to SECO. SECO evaluates the effectiveness of the energy efficiency programs and submits a report (pdf) of its evaluations to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.
Local Governments Technical Assistance
Local Governments Technical Assistance provides personalized on-site technical assistance to political subdivisions, including local governments and municipalities, particularly those affected by the Texas Emissions Reduction Plan (TERP).
Technical assistance includes a free Preliminary Energy Assessment Service which identify system and equipment replacement projects, along with installation cost estimates, estimated energy and cost savings, and payback analyses for each recommended project. Local Governments Technical Assistance also works with the local government representative on how to move forward with the implementation of the recommended projects.
Energy Systems Laboratory
The Energy Systems Laboratory (ESL) is a division of the Texas Engineering Experiment Station, a member of the Texas A&M University System. The ESL is affiliated with the Energy Systems Group in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Texas A&M University. The ESL develops and transfers energy efficiency technology for the public benefit to enable substantial energy savings while improving comfort and productivity. With the passage of SB5, the ESL assumed responsibility for the following:
- To report energy savings to the Texas Public Utility Commission and the Texas Natural Resources Conservation Commission for the purpose of assisting Texas to obtain emissions reduction credits in the State Implementation Plan (SIP) with the US EPA.
- To assist communities in evaluating and quantifying code amendments to the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) which now define the minimum energy efficiency standards for the State of Texas.
- To train builders, code inspectors and officials, manufacturers, homeowners and other interested groups on how to cost effectively implement the energy efficiency standards of the codes.
- To develop a self-certification form for builders outside of municipalities.
- To evaluate Home Energy Rating System (HERS) packages. The ESL will evaluate HERS offerings and assist in defining changes required for the State of Texas.