Arlington Green Concerned About Community Energy Plan

Arlington Green Steve Davis raised concerns about the viability of the county’s proposed Community Energy Plan (CEP) at the April 26 County Board Meeting. Speaking on behalf of the Arlington Green Party, which was a liaison to the Community Energy and Sustainability (CES) Task Force, Steve Davis said he agrees with the plan’s recommendations. But he doesn’t think it goes far enough. He’s also concerned that one of its core recommendations, a district energy company that would use cogeneration of heat and power (CHP) to reduce the carbon footprint of densely populated neighborhoods like Rosslyn, Ballston and Crystal City, might require state legislative approval. Steve said:

As I noted previously, we support most of the proposals outlined in the Report, although we believe that some could have gone further, but until the legal issues inherent in the District Energy model are resolved, we do not believe that the proposed Community Energy Plan can move forward.

In a concession to the Greens, Jay Fisette agreed with Davis that this is a core question that needs to be answered by the Community Energy Advisory Group that County Board voted last night to create to advise the County Manager on a final plan for reducing the county’s carbon foot print.

Regardless of the answer to this question, it’s gratifying that the Arlington Greens and Arlington Democrats find common cause on the need to reduce CO2 emissions, especially since Climate Change deniers are ascendant in both Congress and the state legislature.

8 comments on “Arlington Green Concerned About Community Energy Plan

  1. April 27, 2011 Miriam

    I think Steve did a great job and represented the Green Party well. I feel we need to keep pushing for the education piece.
    check out a joint Yale & GMU study. One thing everyone agrees on is the need for more education.
    Thanks for stewarding this important issue. How could the board ignore the your voice of reason?

  2. April 29, 2011 April

    Did anyone hear what Mr. Hursyz had to say? This so-called energy plan is a huge charade perpetrated by County Government that’s constantly adding to the number of vehicles in the County, number of energy inefficient buildings (the Long Bridge Park Aquatic Center will burn natural gas for heating), amount of impervious surface, and so on.

    Steve Davis is flat out WRONG about distributed energy systems and the Dillon Rule. Whatever Dominion wants from the General Assembly it will get. Also, distributed energy systems are polluting, expensive to repair, and difficult to upgrade for greater energy efficiency.

  3. April 30, 2011 Janet

    I moved to my home in Douglas Park from an older condo community with a distributed hot water / chilled water system. It was a maintenance nightmare. The pipes corrode, heat exchanger units corrode, the compressor unit is very expensive to upgrade and replace, and it costs a lot to dig up the pipes for repair and replacement. The original heat pump in my home was rated at 9 EER and the present heat pump is rated 15 EER and does not use CFL refrigerants. We insulated and installed replacement windows and our heating and cooling costs decreased by 50%.

  4. April 30, 2011 Cindy

    Did anyone ever do an economic analysis if distributed energy systems? Don’t they just pollute downtown areas and transfer their operational inefficiencies and their related costs to the rate payers?

  5. April 30, 2011 Charles

    It’s all part of the Arlington Government 2-Step:

    Step 1 – Allow insipid things to happen. Like approving site plans for buildings having LEED scores of 19, 20, 21, 22 heated, cooled, and lighted by fossil fuels, with 300 parking spaces under the buildings, and no on-site renewable energy, for decades.

    Step 2 – Point to the bad consequences caused by County Government’s actions and say “We have to have a Community Energy Plan to reduce CO2 emissions”.


  6. April 30, 2011 Kristime

    The Arlington Government 2-step applies everywhere and for everything.

    East Falls Church –

    Step 1
    EFC neighborhood was never given a systematic by-right renovation or makeover, which is what Economic Development is SUPPOSED to do, not nationally market Arlington’s neighborhoods as “redevelopment opportunities” to the REITs.

    Step 2
    County Government points to EFC as a “deteriorated neighborhood” and calls for a complete tear-down and replacement with mixed-use dumb growth to fatten the profits of the the REITs.

  7. May 1, 2011 Kristine

    More Arlington County 2-Step:

    Approve construction of 200-500 vehicle parking garages in new construction on major arterials.

    Become concerned about motor vehicle traffic on major arterials and tell everyone to ride bicycles.

  8. May 2, 2011 Barry

    “Classic” Arlington County Board 2-Step, pick anything, they will all work:

    Step 1 – Allow things to “deteriorate”.

    Step 2 – Loudly proclaim that things are “deteriorated” and “we” have to spend X million tax dollars fixing or replacing them, using pet developers, pet non-profits, pet people, to help pimp the process.

    Examples: Newseum, East Falls Church, Affordable Market-Rate rental housing on Columbia Pike.

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