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116th Congress  }                                        {  Rept. 116-504
                         HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session     }                                        {     Part 1

======================================================================



 
                    EXPANDING ACCESS TO SUSTAINABLE 
                           ENERGY ACT OF 2019

                                _______
                                

 September 15, 2020.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on 
            the State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

 Mr. Pallone, from the Committee on Energy and Commerce, submitted the 
                               following

                              R E P O R T

                        [To accompany H.R. 4447]

    The Committee on Energy and Commerce, to whom was referred 
the bill (H.R. 4447) to establish an energy storage and 
microgrid grant and technical assistance program, having 
considered the same, reports favorably thereon with an 
amendment and recommends that the bill as amended do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
  I. Purpose and Summary..............................................3
 II. Background and Need for the Legislation..........................4
III. Committee Hearings...............................................4
 IV. Committee Consideration..........................................5
  V. Committee Votes..................................................5
 VI. Oversight Findings...............................................5
VII. New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures5
VIII.Federal Mandates Statement.......................................6

 IX. Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives............6
  X. Duplication of Federal Programs..................................6
 XI. Committee Cost Estimate..........................................6
XII. Earmarks, Limited Tax Benefits, and Limited Tariff Benefits......6
XIII.Advisory Committee Statement.....................................6

XIV. Applicability to Legislative Branch..............................6
 XV. Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation...................6
XVI. Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, As Reported............7

    The amendment is as follows:
  Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Expanding Access to Sustainable Energy 
Act of 2019''.

SEC. 2. DEFINITIONS.

  (a) Definitions.--In this Act:
          (1) Eligible entity.--The term ``eligible entity'' means--
                  (A) a rural electric cooperative; or
                  (B) a nonprofit organization working with at least 6 
                rural electric cooperatives.
          (2) Energy storage.--The term ``energy storage'' means the 
        use of equipment or facilities relating to the electric grid 
        that are capable of absorbing and converting energy, as 
        applicable, storing the energy for a period of time, and 
        dispatching the energy, that--
                  (A) use mechanical, electrochemical, biochemical, or 
                thermal processes, to convert and store energy that was 
                generated at an earlier time for use at a later time;
                  (B) use mechanical, electrochemical, biochemical, or 
                thermal processes to convert and store energy generated 
                from mechanical processes that would otherwise be 
                wasted for delivery at a later time; or
                  (C) convert and store energy in an electric, thermal, 
                or gaseous state for direct use for heating or cooling 
                at a later time in a manner that avoids the need to use 
                electricity or other fuel sources at that later time, 
                as is offered by grid-enabled water heaters.
          (3) Island.--The term ``island mode'' means a mode in which a 
        distributed generator or energy storage device continues to 
        power a location in the absence of electric power from the 
        primary source.
          (4) Microgrid.--The term ``microgrid'' means an 
        interconnected system of loads and distributed energy 
        resources, including generators and energy storage devices, 
        within clearly defined electrical boundaries that--
                  (A) acts as a single controllable entity with respect 
                to the electric grid; and
                  (B) can connect to, and disconnect from, the electric 
                grid to operate in both grid-connected mode and island 
                mode.
          (5) Renewable energy source.--The term ``renewable energy 
        source'' has the meaning given the term in section 609(a) of 
        the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 (7 U.S.C. 
        918c(a)).
          (6) Rural electric cooperative.--The term ``rural electric 
        cooperative'' means an electric cooperative (as defined in 
        section 3 of the Federal Power Act (16 U.S.C. 796)) that sells 
        electric energy to persons in rural areas.
          (7) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary of 
        Energy.

SEC. 3. ENERGY STORAGE AND MICROGRID ASSISTANCE PROGRAM.

  (a) In General.--Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment 
of this Act, the Secretary shall establish a program under which the 
Secretary shall--
          (1) provide grants to eligible entities under subsection (c);
          (2) provide technical assistance to eligible entities under 
        subsection (d); and
          (3) disseminate information to eligible entities on--
                  (A) the activities described in subsections (c)(1) 
                and (d); and
                  (B) potential and existing energy storage and 
                microgrid projects.
  (b) Cooperative Agreement.--The Secretary may enter into a 
cooperative agreement with an eligible entity to carry out subsection 
(a).
  (c) Grants.--
          (1) In general.--The Secretary shall award grants to eligible 
        entities for identifying, evaluating, designing, and 
        demonstrating energy storage and microgrid projects that 
        utilize energy from renewable energy sources.
          (2) Application.--To be eligible to receive a grant under 
        paragraph (1), an eligible entity shall submit to the Secretary 
        an application at such time, in such manner, and containing 
        such information as the Secretary may require.
          (3) Use of grant.--An eligible entity that receives a grant 
        under paragraph (1)--
                  (A) shall use the grant--
                          (i) to conduct feasibility studies to assess 
                        the potential for implementation or improvement 
                        of energy storage or microgrid projects;
                          (ii) to analyze and implement strategies to 
                        overcome barriers to energy storage or 
                        microgrid project implementation, including 
                        financial, contracting, siting, and permitting 
                        barriers;
                          (iii) to conduct detailed engineering of 
                        energy storage or microgrid projects;
                          (iv) to perform a cost-benefit analysis with 
                        respect to an energy storage or microgrid 
                        project;
                          (v) to plan for both the short- and long-term 
                        inclusion of energy storage or microgrid 
                        projects into the future development plans of 
                        the eligible entity; or
                          (vi) to purchase and install necessary 
                        equipment, materials, and supplies for 
                        demonstration of emerging technologies; and
                  (B) may use the grant to obtain technical assistance 
                from experts in carrying out the activities described 
                in subparagraph (A).
          (4) Condition.--As a condition of receiving a grant under 
        paragraph (1), an eligible entity shall--
                  (A) implement a public awareness campaign, in 
                coordination with the Secretary, about the project 
                implemented under the grant in the community in which 
                the eligible entity is located;
                  (B) submit to the Secretary, and make available to 
                the public, a report that describes--
                          (i) any energy cost savings and environmental 
                        benefits achieved under the project; and
                          (ii) the results of the project, including 
                        quantitative assessments to the extent 
                        practicable, associated with each activity 
                        described in paragraph (3)(A); and
                  (C) create and disseminate tools and resources that 
                will benefit other rural electric cooperatives, which 
                may include cost calculators, guidebooks, handbooks, 
                templates, and training courses.
          (5) Cost-share.--Activities under this subsection shall be 
        subject to the cost-sharing requirements of section 988 of the 
        Energy Policy Act of 2005 (42 U.S.C. 16352).
  (d) Technical Assistance.--
          (1) In general.--In carrying out the program established 
        under subsection (a), the Secretary shall provide eligible 
        entities with technical assistance relating to--
                  (A) identifying opportunities for energy storage and 
                microgrid projects;
                  (B) understanding the technical and economic 
                characteristics of energy storage or microgrid 
                projects;
                  (C) understanding financing alternatives;
                  (D) permitting and siting issues;
                  (E) obtaining case studies of similar and successful 
                energy storage or microgrid projects;
                  (F) reviewing and obtaining computer software for 
                assessment, design, and operation and maintenance of 
                energy storage or microgrid systems; and
                  (G) understanding and utilizing the reliability and 
                resiliency benefits of energy storage and microgrid 
                projects.
          (2) External contracts.--In carrying out paragraph (1), the 
        Secretary may enter into contracts with third-party experts, 
        including engineering, finance, and insurance experts, to 
        provide technical assistance to eligible entities relating to 
        the activities described in such paragraph, or other relevant 
        activities, as determined by the Secretary.

SEC. 4. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  (a) In General.--There is authorized to be appropriated to carry out 
this Act $5,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2021 through 2025.
  (b) Administrative Costs.--Not more than 5 percent of the amount 
appropriated under subsection (a) for each fiscal year shall be used 
for administrative expenses.

                         I. PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

    Representatives Tom O'Halleran (D-AZ) and Markwayne Mullin 
(R-OK) introduced H.R. 4447, the ``Expanding Access to 
Sustainable Energy Act of 2019'', on September 20, 2019. H.R. 
4447 establishes an energy storage and microgrid grant and 
technical assistance program at the United States Department of 
Energy (DOE) to expand access to renewable energy and build 
resiliency.
    H.R. 4447 requires DOE to award grants, provide technical 
assistance, and disseminate information to assist rural 
electric cooperatives and other non-profit entities with 
identifying, evaluating, designing, and demonstrating energy 
storage and microgrid projects that utilize energy from 
renewable energy sources.

                II. BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    Energy storage systems and micro grids have the potential 
to improve electric grid reliability and resilience by 
increasing the ability to withstand and recover from hazards 
that interrupt electric supply, including deliberate attacks, 
accidents, or naturally occurring threats such as severe 
weather. Other potential benefits include enhancing the 
integration of distributed and variable energy resources, 
managing peak electric loads, and using energy resources more 
efficiently.
    Energy storage comprises a diverse set of technologies used 
at various levels of the grid and can provide different 
services. Major existing energy storage technologies currently 
include hydropower pumped storage, compressed air energy 
storage, liquid air energy storage, flywheels, flow batteries, 
lead-acid batteries, lithium-ion batteries, and other chemical 
systems.\1\ Energy storage technologies decrease the need for 
generation at peak demand times and produce energy when 
variable generation does not meet demand. These technologies 
also provide power quality service by smoothing variations in 
voltage supply or frequency and serve as backup generation when 
parts of the grid go down. Additionally, transmission and 
distribution use storage technologies as a means to defer 
upgrades and alleviate transmission congestion by providing 
power locally.\2\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \1\Congressional Research Service, Electricity Storage: 
Applications, Issues, and Technologies (Oct. 2019) (R45980).
    \2\U.S. Energy Information Administration, Batteries perform many 
different functions on the power grid (www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/
detail.php?id=34432) (accessed Feb. 4, 2020).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Microgrids are small systems made up of generation units 
connected to nearby users, such as neighborhoods or critical 
infrastructure. Microgrids can be operated with, or independent 
from, the local bulk transmission system, and can incorporate 
diverse generation sources including renewable energy and 
energy storage. Due to their ability to operate independently, 
microgrids can be an important source of power when weather or 
security related outages occur, improve local management of 
power supply and demand, help defer or avoid system upgrades, 
and be used to support imbalances in generation.\3\
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    \3\C2ES, Microgrids (www.c2es.org/content/microgrids/).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
    H.R. 4447 establishes an energy storage and microgrid grant 
and technical assistance program at DOE. The bill provides 
grants and assistance to rural electric cooperatives and 
nonprofit entities, working with at least six rural electric 
cooperatives, and ensures that these communities have access to 
energy storage and microgrids that are powered by renewable 
energy.

                        III. COMMITTEE HEARINGS

    For the purposes of section 103(i) of H. Res. 6 of the 
116th Congress, the following hearing was used to develop or 
consider H.R. 4447:
    The Subcommittee on Energy held a hearing on February 12, 
2020, entitled, ``Saving Energy: Legislation to Improve Energy 
Efficiency and Storage.'' The Subcommittee received testimony 
from:
           The Honorable Mark Menezes, Under Secretary 
        of Energy, U.S. Department of Energy
           Kelly Speakes-Backman, Chief Executive 
        Officer, Energy Storage Association
           Bryan Howard, Legislative Director, U.S. 
        Green Building Council
           Julie Hiromoto, Principal, HKS, Inc., on 
        behalf of the American Institute of Architects
           Lowell Unger, Senior Policy Advisor, 
        American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy
           Arn McIntyre, President, McIntyre Builders 
        Inc., on behalf of the National Association of Home 
        Builders
           Jennifer Schafer, Executive Director, 
        Federal Performance Contracting Coalition

                      IV. COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    Representatives Tom O'Halleran (D-AZ) and Markwayne Mullin 
(R-OK), along with Reps. Ralph Norman (R-SC) and Conor Lamb (D-
PA), introduced H.R. 4447, the ``Expanding Access to 
Sustainable Energy Act of 2019'', on September 20, 2019, and 
the bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce. 
Subsequently, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on 
Energy on September 23, 2020. The Subcommittee on Energy held a 
legislative hearing on H.R. 4447 on February 12, 2020.
    On September 9, 2020, the full Committee on Energy and 
Commerce met in virtual open markup session, pursuant to 
notice, to consider the bill H.R. 4447, thereby discharging the 
Subcommittee on Energy from further consideration of the bill. 
During the markup of H.R. 4447 Rep. O'Halleran, on behalf of 
himself and Mr. Mullin, offered an amendment in the nature of a 
substitute (AINS) making technical and conforming changes to 
the underlying bill. The full Committee agreed to the 
O'Halleran AINS by a voice vote. At the conclusion of markup of 
the bill, Mr. Pallone, Chairman of the committee, moved that 
H.R. 4447 be ordered reported favorably to the House, amended. 
The Committee on Energy and Commerce agreed to the motion by a 
voice vote, a quorum being present.

                           V. COMMITTEE VOTES

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires the Committee to list each record vote 
on the motion to report legislation and amendments thereto. The 
Committee advises that there were no record votes taken on H.R. 
4447, including the motion for final passage of the bill.

                         VI. OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(1) of rule XIII and clause 2(b)(1) 
of rule X of the Rules of the House of Representatives, the 
oversight findings and recommendations of the Committee are 
reflected in the descriptive portion of the report.

           VII. NEW BUDGET AUTHORITY, ENTITLEMENT AUTHORITY, 
                          AND TAX EXPENDITURES

    Pursuant to 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House 
of Representatives, the Committee adopts as its own the 
estimate of new budget authority, entitlement authority, or tax 
expenditures or revenues contained in the cost estimate 
prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget Office 
(CBO) pursuant to section 402 of the Congressional Budget Act 
of 1974.
    The Committee has requested but not received from the 
Director of the Congressional Budget Office a statement as to 
whether this bill contains any new budget authority, spending 
authority, credit authority, or an increase or decrease in 
revenues or tax expenditures.

                    VIII. FEDERAL MANDATES STATEMENT

    The Committee adopts as its own the estimate of Federal 
mandates prepared by the Director of the Congressional Budget 
Office pursuant to section 423 of the Unfunded Mandates Reform 
Act.

       IX. STATEMENT OF GENERAL PERFORMANCE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII, the general 
performance goal or objective of this legislation is to 
establish a program to provide grants and technical assistance 
for energy storage and microgrid projects to rural electric 
cooperatives and non-profit entities.

                   X. DUPLICATION OF FEDERAL PROGRAMS

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(5) of rule XIII, no provision of 
H.R. 4447 is known to be duplicative of another Federal 
program, including any program that was included in a report to 
Congress pursuant to section 21 of Public Law 111-139 or the 
most recent Catalog of Federal Domestic Assistance.

                      XI. COMMITTEE COST ESTIMATE

    Pursuant to clause 3(d)(1) of rule XIII, the Committee 
adopts as its own the cost estimate prepared by the Director of 
the Congressional Budget Office pursuant to section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.

           XII. EARMARKS, LIMITED TAX BENEFITS, AND LIMITED 
                            TARIFF BENEFITS

    Pursuant to clause 9(e), 9(f), and 9(g) of rule XXI, the 
Committee finds that H.R. 4447 contains no earmarks, limited 
tax benefits, or limited tariff benefits.

                   XIII. ADVISORY COMMITTEE STATEMENT

    No advisory committee within the meaning of section 5(b) of 
the Federal Advisory Committee Act was created by this 
legislation.

                XIV. APPLICABILITY TO LEGISLATIVE BRANCH

    The Committee finds that the legislation does not relate to 
the terms and conditions of employment or access to public 
services or accommodations within the meaning of section 
102(b)(3) of the Congressional Accountability Act.

           XV. SECTION BY SECTION ANALYSIS OF THE LEGISLATION

Section 1. Short title

    Section 1 provides that this Act may be cited as the 
``Expanding Access to Sustainable Energy Act of 2019''.

Sec. 2. Definitions

    Section 2 provides definitions for terms contained in this 
Act.

Sec. 3. Energy storage and microgrid assistance program

    Section 3 provides that the Secretary of Energy shall 
establish a program to provide grants, technical assistance, 
and disseminate information to eligible entities. The program 
should assist with identifying, evaluating, designing, and 
demonstrating energy storage and microgrid projects that 
utilize energy from renewable energy sources.

Sec. 4. Authorization of appropriations

    Section 4 authorizes $5,000,000 to be appropriated to carry 
out the Act for each of fiscal years 2021 through 2025, and 
mandates that no more than 5 percent of the amount appropriated 
for each fiscal year shall be used for administrative expenses.

       XVI. CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW MADE BY THE BILL, AS REPORTED

    There are no changes to existing law made by the bill H.R. 
4447.