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Announcements

Communities LEAP Opportunity

Applications due by Dec. 17

Recently, DOE announced its Communities LEAP (Local Energy Action Program) Pilot, which aims to facilitate sustained community-wide economic and environmental benefits primarily through DOE’s clean energy deployment work.

The application deadline for the Communities LEAP Pilot is coming up. The opportunity is specifically open to low-income, energy-burdened communities also experiencing either direct environmental justice impacts, or direct economic impacts caused by a shift away from fossil fuels. Through the program, DOE will provide supportive services valued at up to $16 million for community-driven clean energy transitions.

In order to provide for transitions involving carbon capture, part of this opportunity will assist communities with evaluating whether carbon capture and storage (CCS) could be included in their long-term clean energy and clean manufacturing plans.

Are you a community leader interested in bringing carbon capture technology to your city? We can help. SSEB has decades of experience leading CCS and related energy technology programs. Reach out to our office by responding to this email or by phone at (770) 242-7712.

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Announcements

Biden Appoints Federal Representative to the Board

President Joe Biden has appointed Jim Powell of Hiawassee, Georgia, as the Federal Representative to the Southern States Energy Board.

Our Federal Representative is appointed by the President as his official liaison to the Board. 

The Honorable Jim Powell will be responsible for providing an annual report to the President on the Board’s programs and activities. In addition, he will serve as an official liaison between the Board, Congress, and all federal agencies. 

He also will assist the Board in its work with the states and territories and in the development of federal energy programs of interest to the southern states. 

“All of us at the Southern States Energy Board thank President Biden for selecting Jim Powell as our federal representative,” said Ken Nemeth, the Board’s secretary and executive director.

“Jim’s extensive experience and work ethic will be essential and critical to our success during the transition period to clean energy and the development of technology innovations to curb environmental pollution,” he said.

Jim previously served as the Federal Representative during the Obama administration from 2013 to 2016. He has also served as a Georgia 9th Congressional District elected Biden delegate to the Democratic National Convention and as a volunteer member of the Biden-Harris Policy Committee.

“I am honored that President Biden has chosen me for this appointment. I look forward to working with the Southern States Energy Board and its member states and territories on energy programs and to advance the President’s Build Back Better initiative,” Powell said.

Currently, Jim is the owner and managing consultant at NORAVA Consulting, a position he has held since 2007. Prior to forming his consulting firm, he served in various capacities at the U.S. Department of Energy from 1986 to 2007. His roles included national program manager, regional director for the Southeast, and associate deputy assistant secretary. Mr. Powell also held several positions with the U.S. Department of the Navy from 1976 to 1986.

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Announcements Programs

Regional Initiatives for CCUS Advancement Awarded $20 Million

On October 15, the U.S. Department of Energy announced $20 million in funding to four projects working to accelerate the regional deployment of carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS). The projects, representing the four corners of the country, are known as DOE’s Regional Initiatives to Accelerate CCUS Deployment.

The Southern States Energy Board leads one of the four regional initiatives. Known as the Southeast Regional CO2 Utilization and Storage Acceleration Partnership (SECARB-USA), our team of technical experts are tasked with identifying at least 50 potential regional sites to evaluate storage resource potential and infrastructure needs. The DOE funding awards approximately $5 million to our regional initiative program.

The goal of SECARB-USA is to help the United States meet its need for secure, affordable, and environmentally sound fossil energy supplies by utilizing the advancements made by the regional initiatives to continue identifying and addressing knowledge gaps.

Expanding the deployment of CCUS will reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from industrial sources and is a crucial component to achieving the Biden-Harris Administration’s goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.

DOE Announcement

We’re ready to continue leading a coalition of CCUS experts tasked with identifying and resolving regional challenges facing the deployment of carbon capture technologies in the Southeast! To learn more about our SECARB-USA program, click the logo below.

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Announcements Meetings

61st Annual Meeting Photo Album Available

Were you unable to attend our meeting? Or maybe you did attend, but you want to relive all the great speakers, discussions, and memories?

Relive the meeting now by clicking the button below.

More information about the meeting can be found here. We hope you’ll join us next year in South Carolina with our new Executive Committee Chairman, Gov. Henry McMaster!

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Announcements Meetings

Attending our Annual Meeting? Download our App!

We’re excited to kick off our 61st Annual Meeting today! As with prior events, we have an app that will help you to orient and interact while at the meeting!

Download it now to access your digital name tag, agenda, attendee list, sponsors, and more all from your mobile device or tablet.

If the event does not load automatically after downloading the app, type in the event ID from your registration confirmation email or search for 61st Annual Meeting.

Login to the app using the same email you registered with, and you will receive a verification code to finish the process.

Attendee Website

For those who prefer a web-based alternative, we also have an attendee website with much of the same functionality as the app! Use it to plan your day, contact staff, or message other attendees!

Our staff will be happy to guide you through the process of accessing the app or attendee website once at the meeting. See you in OKC!

Categories
Announcements Documents

2021 Annual Report Available

Ahead of our 61st Annual Meeting, we’ve released this year’s Annual Report.

Chairman’s Message Excerpt

From Oklahoma’s Governor Kevin Stitt:

For the 61st Annual Meeting of the Southern States Energy Board, I chose the theme, Energy Pioneers in the New Frontier. Our Nation is entering a period of unprecedented change and transition in the energy sector that includes all facets of energy, including production, transmission, environmental protection, transportation infrastructure, and workforce development. How we consume energy is changing every day.


The challenges before us are enormous, but with this change comes great opportunity. As we take these challenges head on, it is important that we recall the giants upon whose shoulders we stand today. In Oklahoma, they were pioneers like Frank and Waite Phillips, Bill Skelly, and E.W. Marland, or modern-day titans like T. Boone Pickens, Harold Hamm, and Aubrey McClendon who paved the way for Oklahoma to be a world leader in energy production.


Oklahoma and its oil & gas industry have always been pioneers and innovators in energy and can claim many of the most important events in history. We proudly recall the history of oil being discovered before the territory became a State: on April 15, 1897, a wooden oil derrick named the Nellie Johnstone No. 1 in Bartlesville, Indian Territory, enabled a plume of crude oil and water to burst through the earth, ushering a new oil industry into what would become Oklahoma. That well became the State’s first commercial oil enterprise and drew over 100,000 barrels of oil over a period of 50 years. The process of hydraulic fracturing was invented in 1949 by Halliburton in Duncan, Oklahoma, while that same technology was later combined with horizontal drilling by other Oklahoma companies who are responsible for creating the shale revolution.


We are long removed from the time when oil derricks were scattered across the prairies, and Sooners, as they were called, used the oil they collected to grease parts from their wooden wagons. When drilling began in 1897, it would take six wagons to drag a wooden rig, sometimes over a hundred miles to the drilling site.


Today, we are a premier energy producing state that has taken our “all of the above” energy policy to the next level. We remain a leader in our proud tradition of producing fossil energy, but most people are surprised to learn that Oklahoma is a leader in renewables and alternative energy. We are one of only four states in the U.S. to get more than 40 percent of our power from renewables. Our wind resources are so legendary that they were canonized in our State by Rodgers & Hammerstein.


Our unique mix of natural gas and renewables has yielded remarkable environmental results. Oklahoma has reduced its carbon dioxide emissions from the power sector by three times the national average as measured against the 2005 benchmark used by the Biden Administration. Using the latest numbers from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), Oklahoma has reduced its CO2 from the power sector by 35 percent while the national average is only 12 percent. We have done so while remaining the most affordable energy in the country in 9 of the last 11 quarters, according to EIA. We believe Oklahoma can legitimately boast that we have the cleanest and most affordable energy in the country.


I am proud to be Chairman of the SSEB, because it allows us to support our member states in maximizing the use of their resources in the way that is most beneficial to their citizens and states. I strongly believe that these types of policy and resource decisions are best made by state and local governments allowing the markets and trends to guide their choices. Today, we see consumers and investors demanding cleaner sources of energy with less emissions. We are proud that Oklahoma and the Southern States Energy Board are leaders in meeting those demands in a sensible and affordable way.


Since its inception in 1960, the Southern States Energy Board has been a part of our region’s pioneering spirit. From the Board’s role at the outset of nuclear power development to the age of carbon management, and from the technological innovations that cleared sulfur and nitrous oxides from our Appalachian Mountain air to the development of an interstate mechanism for remediation of environmental permitting, SSEB has been an active and strident supporter of strong state responses to energy and environmental issues.


In February of this year, the Board’s Carbon Management Program grew through final award of a new project that will test an emerging technology for direct air capture of carbon dioxide (CO2). Partners include AirCapture LLC , Crescent Resource Innovation, Global Thermostat, the National Carbon Capture Center, Southern Company, and Synapse. The Technology will be designed and tested in a fabrication facility and then transported to the National Carbon Capture Center in Wilsonville, Alabama. The direct air capture skids will be integrated into the center’s facility for operational testing. Design activities are underway now and testing will begin in 2023.


Last September, the SSEB Carbon Management Team began Phase 3 of our CarbonSAFE project, also referred to as Project ECO2S. The purpose of this activity is to determine the feasibility for establishing a CO2 storage complex in Mississippi. Critical path milestones for this venture include ensuring compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act and pursuing a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Underground Injection Control Class VI permit for CO2 storage, which will be the first for a Southern States Energy Board carbon management project since the Class VI final rule was established by EPA in 2010. To date, our team has drilled three stratigraphic test wells and one groundwater test well to further assess the suitability of the geology within our area of interest. Seismic data acquisition was completed earlier this year, and data assessment is underway. This endeavor has the most partners of any Board program.


The Southeast Regional CO2 Utilization and Storage Acceleration Partnership, or SECARB-USA, is the follow-on phase to our highly successful SECARB project. The scope of our activities focuses on addressing key technical challenges to carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS); data collection, sharing and analysis; transportation and distribution infrastructure; and promoting regional technology transfer and knowledge dissemination. During the past year, our team has been examining the geology within the southern region for future technology deployment opportunities and determining infrastructure needs to connect CO2 sources to storage reservoirs or areas where CO2-enhanced recovery options may exist. The maps and routing simulations created by the team will assist developers in identifying routes that have the least human and environmental impact. Our expert team of stakeholders also has identified impediments to CCUS deployment and determined additional work that the partners will perform to eliminate these challenges.


SSEB’s assessment of CCUS opportunities in Southwest Arkansas has shown very positive results. This evaluation was requested by Governor Asa Hutchinson. The Board and its partner, Advanced Resources International, Inc., (ARI) first performed a screening study of CO2 storage and enhanced oil recovery options, which was funded by the State. Upon completion of the initial screening, the project was transferred into our SECARB project in order to use existing funding to perform more robust analyses.


On June 23, SSEB, Governor Hutchinson, Secretary of Commerce Mike Preston, Public Service Commission Chairman and Governor’s Alternate to SSEB Ted Thomas, ARI, and CRI jointly hosted a Southwest Arkansas Revitalization Workshop in El Dorado, Arkansas. The event coincided with the 100th anniversary of the January 1921 discovery of oil In Union County, Arkansas. The workshop presenters covered many aspects of the opportunity for revitalization of the oil and gas industry in Southwest Arkansas, including the concept of CCUS, why it is a viable commercial opportunity in El Dorado and surrounding areas, the legal and regulatory frameworks surrounding CCUS, asset financing options, and suitable business models and case studies.


The Southern States Energy Board’s CCUS Offshore Partnership recently received approval for its second and final phase of work. The results of the project will include high prospect areas for future offshore CCUS project development in the eastern Gulf of Mexico. This venture also will culminate in a guidance document on the legal, regulatory, and technical feasibility of offshore CO2 subsea storage projects, as well as a prospect-specific feasibility assessment for infrastructure development, operations, and decommissioning.


Another agreement that has received a five-year renewal is our project that supports the Transuranic, or TRU, Waste Transportation Working Group. These are state officials that coordinate the interstate shipments of TRU waste to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad, New Mexico. The project also enables SSEB to provide direct funding to states for full time staff who monitor these shipments, engage in emergency response planning, direct emergency responder training, and procure equipment. The Working Group meets twice per year, and our staff is in constant communication with the states on shipment schedules, training opportunities, coordination, and purchasing needs.


SSEB also serves as the staff for the Southern Emergency Response Council created by Southern Governors in 1972. The Council, with SSEB serving as the Secretariat, administers the Southern Mutual Radiation Assistance Plan (SMRAP) which provides mutual aid from state to state in the event of an emergency occurring at any of the region’s nuclear power plants. SMRAP is vigorously tested annually.


The Southern States Energy Board has provided innovative technical and policy leadership over many decades while being mindful of the socio-economic impacts of our actions on generations to come. The SECARB, SECARB-USA, Project ECO2S, SECARB Offshore, and Direct Air Capture projects exemplify the pioneering spirit and effectiveness of public-private partnership collaborations in designing, developing, and demonstrating the clean energy technologies of the future. However, the Board has recognized a significant need to assemble a larger group of industry stakeholders and experts to promote the rapid and transformative deployment of CCUS technologies – commercially and at a much larger scale.


Last September, we announced our collaboration with the University of Houston’s Center for Carbon Management in Energy. We are applying lessons learned and experiences in our R&D projects and demonstrations to develop a Commercialization Consortium that will accelerate CCUS deployment. We also are engaging a Leadership Team of industry and subject matter experts to provide visionary strategies in our development of a roadmap designed to achieve CCUS commercialization. The Leadership Team is composed of representatives from 33 major U.S.-based energy companies that are committed to providing us with assistance to further identify and offer solutions to remaining uncertainties impeding industry investments in CCUS technologies. We are excited to work with such an impressive group of industry stakeholders, many of whom are Associate Members!


Assembling our members and project partners in virtual meetings has become a common means of communication and collaboration for our staff since the onset of the pandemic in 2020. At SSEB, we held our first large, virtual conference just over a year ago and have hosted over 250 virtual meetings and webinars since our last Board meeting.


Earlier this year, we initiated a webinar series. This is not meant to replace our meetings but offers a unique way to gather for an hour and learn about technologies or issues that are of importance to our member states. The first webinar, held February 25th, analyzed the growing pace of electric vehicle adoption in the Southeast and examined the industry and policy response. The second event occurred on March 11th and focused on innovations in electric vehicle batteries and new facilities planned for southern states. Two subsequent webinars have focused on Regional Initiatives for Carbon Capture and Storage and SSEB’s SECARB-USA Partnership.


During the past two years of my Chairmanship, we have seen great change as a constant. The pandemic has created great strain on all of us. It has changed the way we are able to work, the way we meet, the way we deliver services, but it has also revealed the needs from health care to transportation or how the demand for energy can change so quickly. We learned to be ready for anything. I am not sure any of our member states was fully prepared for the polar vortex that hit the south last February. With temperatures remaining well below freezing for 10 days, we saw new winter peaks and unprecedented disruptions and millions without power during this powerful storm. We are seeing northern and northwestern states experiencing heatwaves causing similar disruptions in the power grid causing problems. Our work here in the SSEB is more important than ever.


With all these changes, these pioneers are facing a new frontier and we are spearheading an “all of the above” approach to energy policy. We choose energy that is produced locally, that is affordable, and that is reliable. We are a leader in wind generation and other renewable resources, ranking #2 nationally in wind production. As one of four states that receives 40 percent of our electricity from renewable resources, we have embraced a future that enables us to produce power locally and export 28 percent of our energy to neighboring states.


SSEB’s enormous portfolio of current projects and programs exceeds $457 million in 2021, a phenomenal amount considering the size of the staff. What I have focused on above is merely a part of the range of activities that are the Board’s emphasis this year. Since October 2020, SSEB has generated more than $34 million in new public-private partnerships that include energy industry, state, and federal funding. The majority of these funds support member states and territories through contracts and subawards with state agencies, colleges and universities, utility partners, energy research organizations, national laboratories, energy resource companies, and businesses in our southern region.


It is a privilege for me to serve as the Chairman of such a vigorous and constructive organization that constantly is transcending boundaries and closing the gaps between policy and technology applications!

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Announcements Meetings

Register Now for our 61st Annual Meeting!

Registration for our 61st Annual Meeting is now open!

Our Chair, Oklahoma’s Governor Kevin Stitt, will host the 3-day event from Sept. 27-29 in Oklahoma City.

The theme, Energy Pioneers in the New Frontier, will guide our discussions pertaining to emergent technologies and the exploration of new and refined ways to secure America’s energy future.

After last year’s virtual Annual Meeting, we are back with an in-person conference hosted at the newly built Omni Hotel located in the heart of Oklahoma City’s entertainment district. Nearby attractions include the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, the Oklahoma City Zoo, and much more!

The discounted room rate for this event is $189 per night plus taxes and fees. Space is limited, so we recommend registering and reserving your room as soon as possible.

If you have any questions about the registration or hotel reservation process, please contact our Event Planner, Michelle Thornton, via email.

Interested in sponsoring our event? Please contact our Grants & Accounting Manager, Leigh Hawkins, via email or use the contact form here.

We can’t wait to see you all this fall!

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Announcements Meetings

Registration for our 61st Annual Meeting Opens Soon!

Mark your calendars! Registration for our 61st Annual Meeting opens soon. Please ensure you’re signed up for our newsletter to receive notice when registration opens.

Our Chair, Oklahoma’s Governor Kevin Stitt, will host the 3-day event from Sept. 27-29 in Oklahoma City.

Last year, we hosted a truncated, virtual version of our 60th Annual Meeting.

This year, we are back with an in-person conference hosted at the newly built Omni Hotel located in the heart of Oklahoma City’s entertainment district.

If you are interested in sponsoring the event, please contact our Grants & Accounting Manager, Leigh Hawkins, via email or use the contact form here.

We can’t wait to see you all this fall!

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Announcements Webinar

Webinar Archive Now Available

A new page is available on our site that will serve as an archive for our educational webinars. You can find the page listed under our Events tab.

Currently, the archive features access to The Evolution of EVs in the Southeast, with future webinars and related videos to be added as they occur.

Please subscribe to our Youtube channel for new video notifications and live streaming alerts.

If you have suggestions, comments, or questions concerning future webinars, contact Turney Foshee.

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Announcements Membership

February Board Additions

Over the month of February, we added three new members to the Board. Two members come to us from Missouri: Sen. Mike Cierpiot and his alternate, Sen. Jason Bean.

Sen. Mike Cierpiot was elected to serve in the Missouri Senate during the November 2017 Special Election. He represents the 8th senatorial district covering Eastern Jackson County.

Prior to his time in the Missouri Senate, Cierpiot served seven years in the Missouri House of Representatives where he served as the Assistant Majority Floor Leader for three years and was later elected to serve as the Majority Floor Leader until the end of his tenure in the Missouri House.

His colleague, Sen. Jason Bean, was elected to the Missouri Senate in 2020 and represents Butler, Carter, Dunklin, Mississippi, New Madrid, Pemiscot, Shannon, and Stoddard counties.

Sen. Bean is a fifth generation Missourian raised in the Bootheel, and he currently lives on the same farm where he grew up and learned how to farm. He attended the University of Missouri – Columbia where he majored in agronomy and minored in animal science.

We look forward to working with both Sen. Cierpiot and Sen. Bean on the issues important to Missourians.

Florida also added a new member to the board with Rep. Bobby Payne.

Rep. Payne graduated from St. Johns River Community College and Jacksonville University. He then earned an M.B.A. from Nova Southeastern University. Payne served for 34 years in the electricity transmission & utility management industry with Seminole Electric Cooperative. He held several different positions, including Manager of Operations at the Seminole Generating Station in Palatka. In addition, he served as chairman of the Putnam County Chamber of Commerce, past president of Sunrise Rotary, and a board member of the Putnam County United Way.

We are excited to work with Rep. Payne and his colleagues in the Florida Legislature.