RMEL eNews
RMEL Report

From the Desk of Executive Director Richard Putnicki

Registration is NOW OPEN for the 2021 Virtual Spring Conference!

Individual and Corporate Registration Packages are now available for RMEL’s 2021 Spring Management, Engineering & Operations Conference being held May 18-20. We are bringing the robust program of timely & relevant sessions directly to you, including:

  • Quality keynotes and general sessions
  • The popular RMEL Senior Leadership Panel
  • Three educational tracks - Generation, Transmission & Distribution & Management
  • Interactive Roundtable discussions
  • More networking opportunities
  • New sponsorship opportunities

Former U.S. Navy SEAL Rear Admiral Scott Moore to Keynote RMEL's 2021 Spring Conference

Having served 30 years as a SEAL leader, retired Rear Admiral Scott Moore is a master in organizational leadership and teambuilding. He served in every leadership position in the SEAL teams, including the former commander of the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, and closed out his career as the number two leader in the entire SEAL organization. He led the military’s elite forces through more than 2,000 of our nation’s most extreme, high-stakes missions and was deployed on SEAL team operations across the globe. He understands the importance of leadership and cohesiveness like few others can, and his experience runs the gamut from leading small groups to large-scale tactical planning. From the mountains of Afghanistan to briefings in the Oval Office, Moore is the man our leaders trusted when failure was not an option. Read Admiral Moore's Full Bio.

Bringing RMEL Member Experiences, Best Practices, Resources & Lessons Learned to You Virtually

We’ve known since March of last year that if we’re going to put on a Virtual Spring Conference it would need to be as robust as possible to best match the productive and customizable experience of the in-person Spring Conference. The Spring Management, Engineering and Operations Conference has been a tradition since RMEL's early beginnings. Known for providing outstanding continuing education and networking opportunities, this conference is a must-participate event. Register yourself or RMEL member companies can sign up for a Group Registration Package for unlimited registrations for your employees!

RMEL Webinars and Workshops This Spring and Summer

Webinar (Complimentary for RMEL Members) – A Roadmap for Continuous Human Performance Improvement
Wednesday, April 28th – 9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m. Mountain Daylight Time

The term Human Performance Improvement is often connected with thoughts and actions aimed at improving the performance and reliability of the people doing the work. Those with experience along these lines understand that improving and sustaining human performance is less about trying to improve or change the human condition than it is about improving the conditions in which people work. This interactive discussion will explore the role of human nature in consequential events, the value of reliable systems and processes, and a roadmap for implementing and sustaining effective human performance improvement programs.

"I Can See Clearly Now…” Leadership in a Time of Uncertainty Workshop – Worth 8.0 PDHs
Workshop Postponed Pre-Registration Now Available – New Dates TBD – Please Email info@rmel.org or Call (303) 865-5544 to Pre-Register

RMEL is offering an online development program aimed at helping leaders enhance their ability to lead in times of uncertainty and social change…times like now. This will be instructed by John Miner, P.E., President & CEO, Collaborative Learning, Inc./Collaboration Unlimited. and Betsy Aylin, PhD, Executive and Management Consultant, Collaborative Learning, Inc./Collaboration Unlimited. Participants who complete this program will be awarded 8.0 professional development hours (PDHs). This virtual but highly interactive and engaging program is aimed at helping leaders at any level in the organization understand and better use their own strengths to lead the people they work with through this time of uncertainty and change. This online program is structured in two online half-day sessions of approximately 4 hours each.  Pre-program requirements will enable the course to start quickly, ensuring comfort with the technology being used and framing the interests of the participants. The program is highly interactive and will include working with small learning groups, skill practice, discussion and other ways to engage with the content.

Distribution Engineers Workshop – Worth 9.0 PDHs
Thursday, June 3rd, June 10th & June 17th – 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. Mountain Daylight Time

Distribution engineers and designers will have a unique opportunity to hear from a wide range of organizations during the Distribution Engineers Workshop. This technical workshop will feature utility and services/supplier presenters providing in-depth instruction on today’s biggest engineering and design topics, best practices and solutions.

Complimentary Webinars & Roundtables for RMEL Members for Generation, Transmission, Distribution & Safety Continue

We have seen a growing interest from seasoned and new RMEL participants alike in RMEL’s webinars and roundtables. We recently wrapped up a Safety Roundtable on ATVs & UTVs and a Generation Panel/Roundtable on the technical challenges of implementing renewables. Look for much more of these opportunities to learn and share from your desk soon!

Announcing the 2021 RMEL Foundation Golf Tournament

After taking a COVID-year hiatus, the 2021 RMEL Foundation Golf Tournament will be held June 23rd, 2021, at Arrowhead Golf Club in Littleton, CO! We have sure missed seeing everyone in person, and as we all navigate the vaccination rollout, travel restrictions and all the "next normals,” we want to start getting back to what we do best, in-person networking and education. For those that are able to participate it will be a great time to see some familiar and new faces in an open environment. We will have more details to come on registration, social distancing best practices for the tournament, sponsorships and much more!

In Closing….

I sincerely thank you all again for trusting your RMEL Education Section Committees, RMEL Board, RMEL Foundation Board and staff as we make plans for the future. We are looking forward to seeing you again as soon as possible!  Remember to share your topics of interest with your corporate RMEL representative or email us at info@rmel.org.

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RMEL's trusted network is now accessible on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. These are forums intended for RMEL members only. Working side-by-side in a cooperative manner, RMEL members band together for the common goal of bettering the industry and improving service for utility customers. For more than 100 years, these key principles have proven successful, and more importantly, are tried and true methods for building strong business relationships.
 
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Industry Information
  
As utilities meet aggressive federal and state decarbonization targets, it will be incumbent on them to communicate and educate customers, executives from major U.S. utilities said at the BNEF Summit on Wednesday.
  
Avista and Chelan County Public Utility District (PUD) in Washington State have finalized a contract for renewable hydropower from two Chelan PUD hydropower projects on the Columbia River.
  
During a government-sponsored forum, the U.S. Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland joined the Secretaries of Energy, Commerce, and Transportation along with representatives from states, the offshore wind industry, and members of the labor community to identify solutions to the greatest challenges facing the development of U.S. offshore wind.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) awarded $2 million to four research and development (R&D) projects advancing clean-hydrogen production technologies, which may prove pivotal to reducing carbon emissions and meeting the Biden Administration’s climate change goals.
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) unveiled two funding opportunities totaling more than $162 million to improve efficiency and reduce carbon emissions among cars, trucks, and off-road vehicles. 
Significantly colder-than-normal temperatures in the Lower 48 states in late January through mid-February resulted in increased heating demand for natural gas in the United States, despite an otherwise warmer-than-normal winter.
 
  
The global pandemic has forced many industries to transform at a faster pace than ever before. From virtual meetings and events, to remote working. 
  
The first operational remote grid for California’s largest investor-owned utility will be made up of an integrated solar, battery, and generator system. If it works, the plan will be to roll out several hundred more across the state.
  
The first of three Oklahoma wind energy facilities to be owned by subsidiaries of American Electric Power is now completed and in commercial operation.
  
NordLink, the subsea interconnector between Norway and Germany, is now in operation. 
Building Back Better: Addressing Climate Change in the Electricity Sector and Fostering Economic Growth
Lincoln Electric System has been awarded a Reliable Public Power Provider (RP3)® designation from the American Public Power Association for providing reliable and safe electric service.
Member Announcements
  
Arizona Public Service Co. (APS), an owner and operator of the Four Corners Power Plant, announced plans of an agreement among plant owners Navajo Transitional Energy Company (NTEC), Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM), Salt River Project (SRP) and Tucson Electric Power (TEP) to move toward operating the plant seasonally beginning fall 2023, subject to necessary approvals.
  
Since CPS Energy’s President & CEO, Paula Gold-Williams, created the Flexible PathSM strategy in 2017, the nation’s largest municipally owned, fully-integrated electric and natural gas utility has focused on seeking new and innovative ways to reduce air emissions to create a cleaner San Antonio energy future. 
  
Nebraska Public Power District (NPPD) has earned the American Public Power Association’s (APPA) Safety Award of Excellence for safe operating practices during 2020, ranking first among similar sized utilities.
NextEra Energy Marketing, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of NextEra Energy Resources, LLC,  announced that it has formed the Great Pee Dee Mitigation Bank (GPDMB) in northeastern South Carolina. The GPDMB was approved by South Carolina's Interagency Review Team (IRT) in February 2021, along with the first release of stream and wetland mitigation credits.
The Omaha Public Power District Board of Directors discussed succession plans following the recent retirement announcement by President & CEO Timothy J. Burke. Burke will be stepping down July 2 after 24 years at the utility.
Platte River Power Authority’s latest solar installation began commercial operation earlier this month, featuring the utility’s first use of battery storage, a technology critical to the organization’s goal of achieving a 100% noncarbon energy portfolio by 2030.
 
Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) is issuing a request for proposal (RFP) for any and all forms of electric generation and innovative technologies to power our customers and transition our energy mix to 100 percent emissions-free.
Southern Power, a leading U.S. wholesale energy provider and subsidiary of Southern Company, announced the acquisition of its 14th wind project — the 300-megawatt (MW) Deuel Harvest Wind Farm — from Invenergy, a leading developer, owner and operator of sustainable energy solutions.
Cross department collaboration, technician and engineer training, tabletop exercises and state-of-the art utility technology testing are just some of the value-added capabilities SRP has as part of its new Technology Innovation Laboratory in Scottsdale. 
 
Stamped for approval! The Dodge City Business Park became a certified site, which verifies that the 245-acre business park meets necessary criteria for industrial development.
Wholesale power supply cooperative Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association expanded its participation in the CAISO Western Energy Imbalance Market (WEIM) real-time energy market into New Mexico at midnight, April 1 as the Public Service Company of New Mexico (PNM) balancing authority joined the market.
Southwest Power Pool received a letter from Western Area Power Administration’s Colorado River Storage Project expressing interest in evaluating membership in the organization. 
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