Texas’ Mandated Local Government Energy Reduction Goal: Challenges and Best Practices
Since 2018, the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG) has worked under a contract from the State Energy Conservation Office (SECO) to conduct outreach to increase awareness and compliance to the state-mandated Local Government Energy Reporting (LGER) required by Texas Health and Safety Code §388.005 (THSC §388.005).1 The LGER reporting requirements were originally established in 2001 to support efforts to attain federal ozone standards by reducing electricity demand among institutes of higher education, state agencies and political subdivisions in affected counties that would then reduce emissions produced from electricity generation. The latest revision of the Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW) State Implementation Plan (SIP), adopted on March 4, 2020, forecasts that approximately 22 percent of point source nitrogen oxide (NOX) emissions in the DFW ozone nonattainment area will result from electricity generation units (EGUs) in 2020.2 As NOX emissions are the dominant factor in determining ozone formation in DFW, efforts to reduce NOX are critical to attaining federal standards.
While all applicable entities in affected counties are subject to the LGER reporting requirements, organizations fulfill these requirements using different reporting forms. This whitepaper focuses on the reporting completed by political subdivisions - primarily municipalities, counties, and special districts – including the challenges and associated best practices to assist in meeting reporting obligations and fulfilling the annual electricity reduction goal.