Environmental Justice: making a difference through stakeholder engagement

clock October 12, 2012 15:26 by author Bulletin Board
Environmental Justice (EJ) is the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.[1]  Fair treatment means that no group of people bears a disproportionate share of negative environmental consequences resulting from the execution of Federal, state and local laws regulations, and policies.  EJ seeks to empower people from all walks of life to protect human health and the environment through participation in env... [More]

Site Office Oversight of National Lab Projects (Recovery Act)

clock September 14, 2012 15:45 by author Bulletin Board
An essential responsibility of the Office of Project Management and Evaluation (PME) is the oversight of all EERE Recovery Act projects.  As part of this oversight, PME recently conducted a review of the project management process for Recovery Act projects implemented by the national laboratories and managed by the DOE site offices. Over the course of six weeks, PME team members conducted interviews with nine selected site offices.  PME reviewed project data, monitoring reports, site specific procedures, and best practices. The resulting report showed that sound project management pr... [More]

Root Cause Analysis: Identifying Common Issues

clock September 4, 2012 10:51 by author Bulletin Board
Whether mandated by law or simply to address topics of interest, numerous audits are performed each year both internally by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and externally by other agencies or organizations. Internal DOE audits are typically carried out by the Office of Inspection General (OIG) while external ones are done by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) or independent auditing organizations. Regardless of who conducts the audits, the Office of Program Management and Evaluation (PME) within the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) works closely as an au... [More]

EERE Project Monitoring - An Overview

clock August 29, 2012 15:55 by author Bulletin Board
While project monitoring has always been an important part of EERE’s work, the Recovery Act highlighted a need for greater consistency across programs and sites, as well as a clear delineation of roles and responsibilities. In August 2010, EERE rolled out its Monitoring Plan for Research, Development, Demonstration and Deployment (RDD&D) projects. The plan details the processes involved in the monitoring of all RDD&D awards. [More]

EERE Mission into Action: Project Planning

clock August 22, 2012 13:40 by author Bulletin Board
EERE’s mission is supporting clean energy technology that strengthen the economy, protects the environment, and reduces dependence on foreign oil, and do so across 10 technology areas: Solar; Geothermal; Biomass; Fuel Cells; Wind/Water; Manufacturing; Vehicles Homes; Buildings; and Government. How does EERE translate this mission into action? The answer: a planning process that disseminates broad-reaching strategies from general multi-year planning documents to detailed annual plans. The project planning process is the first step in the EERE Project Life Cycle, described in a previous blog post: Turning Ideas into Action. This process relies on gathering input from industry stakeholders and examining current market conditions. [More]

“On the Ground” Project Monitoring - Site Visits

clock August 10, 2012 07:10 by author Bulletin Board
Ensuring project success requires effective monitoring of what’s actually happening “on the ground.” While a Technical Project Officer (TPO) can evaluate a great deal of important project information from his or her home office, known as “desktop monitoring,” this cannot replace the increased level of communication and goodwill built from an onsite visit with the recipient. TPOs utilize site visits as an opportunity for face-to-face meetings to foster an improved relationship with the Recipient, review new and/or complicated grant requirements, and discuss progr... [More]

TPO Creates Tracking Tool to Keep a Close Eye on Project Performance

clock August 3, 2012 16:53 by author Bulletin Board
The Recovery Act brought many new grants to the EERE, which greatly expanded the project portfolios of Technical Project Officers (TPOs).  To help manage his workload, a TPO overseeing a suite of hydroelectric projects has developed a straightforward, Excel-based spreadsheet to track monthly financial data in both numerical and graphical forms. The value of this tool is that it helps the TPO identify monthly variances between actual and budgeted amounts, thus providing a near real-time picture of a project’s financial performance.  Additionally, a quick analysis of the trends... [More]

Finding the Resources to Assist EERE’s Diverse Range of Grantees

clock July 20, 2012 15:43 by author Bulletin Board
Government regulations for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) grants can be overwhelming for new grantees, and this problem can be magnified when there is a language barrier involved. This was the case in a Spanish speaking U.S. territory. Although the Technical Project Officer (TPO) was well qualified to monitor the project, it became clear during a site visit that something was getting lost in translation. [More]

Turning Ideas into Action: The EERE Project Life Cycle

clock July 10, 2012 15:35 by author Bulletin Board
All projects begin with an idea. Within EERE, these ideas are often born out of a strategic goal or technology-specific research and development objective. Each year, EERE partners with stakeholders from large and small companies, non-profits, universities, state and local governments, and other public agencies to develop and advance these new energy ideas and goals. These partnerships result in billions of dollars of active projects working towards building a clean energy economy. [More]

NEPA: Lessons Learned Under the Recovery Act

clock July 5, 2012 17:01 by author Bulletin Board
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act resulted in more than 3,000 Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) projects that required review for compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). This demanded a previously unparalleled level of effort from the EERE NEPA team and provided the team with the unique opportunity to study the NEPA process applied on a very broad scale. What would be the NEPA “lessons learned” of the Recovery Act? [More]