The Pennsylvania Petroleum Association (PPA) has launched the Robert V. Boltz Scholarship Foundation, a newly established 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation that was created to offer tuition assistance to individuals set to enroll in PPA Technical Center’s (PPATEC) 10-week HVAC & Energy Professional Program.

Bob Boltz

PPATEC will offer this gateway training program starting in July 2022. Visit: https://boltzscholarship.org/the-scholarship-fund/.

Tax-deductible contributions can also be made to the scholarship foundation. Visit https://boltzscholarship.org/donate/.

In October 2021, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) began publishing expanded data on biofuels other than ethanol in its Monthly Energy Review (MER), including production, imports, feedstocks and consumption. The expanded biofuels data provide a more detailed look at fuels previously grouped under renewable fuels except ethanol, which is now split into biodiesel, renewable diesel and other biofuels.

Biofuels are liquid fuels produced from biological materials such as wood scraps and farm crops. The EIA collects data on biofuels in its recently expanded Monthly Report of Biofuels, Fuels from Non-Biogenic Wastes, Fuel Oxygenates, Isooctane, and Isooctene survey. Some of the MER biofuels data for years dating before 2021, when the expanded survey went into effect, come from other EIA surveys as well as the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The biofuel imports data for all years come from EIA’s Monthly Imports Report survey.

In addition to providing more detailed data from our expanded biofuels survey, the new MER biofuels tables highlight statistics important to emerging energy market trends:

  • In July 2021, 37 million barrels of biofuels were produced in the United States, the most since the beginning of 2020.
  • Renewable diesel production reached a record-high 1.7 million barrels in July 2021.
  • Fuel ethanol accounted for 86% of total U.S. biofuels production in July 2021, biodiesel for 9%, renewable diesel fuel for 5%, and other biofuels for less than 1%.
  • In the first half of 2021, the most renewable diesel fuel on record was produced in the United States at 7.8 million barrels.

The MER’s Biodiesel Overview table contains biodiesel data. Biodiesel is a renewable fuel made from various feedstocks, including refined vegetable oils, recycled cooking oils and rendered animal fats. Biodiesel is often blended with petroleum diesel in percentages ranging from 5% to 20% biodiesel.

Renewable diesel is chemically the same as petroleum diesel, so it meets specifications for use in existing infrastructure and diesel engines and is not subject to any blending limitations. Participants in greenhouse gas reduction programs, such as the federal Renewable Fuel Standard and the California Low Carbon Fuel Standard, are increasingly using renewable diesel to meet renewable fuel targets. The expanded biofuels data allow data users to track the growth in renewable diesel. Data on renewable diesel are available in the MER’s Renewable diesel fuel overview.

The Other Biofuels Overview table contains data on other biofuels, which include renewable jet fuel, renewable heating oil, renewable naphtha and gasoline, biobutanol and other biofuels and biointermediates.

Source: https://www.eia.gov/todayinenergy/detail.php?id=50416

Propane company Ferrellgas Partners, L.P. is partnering with Operation Warm, a national nonprofit organization that offers warmth, confidence and hope to underserved children through the gift of winter coats.

“At Ferrellgas, we strive to make propane easy for our customers,” Ferrellgas CEO Tamria Zertuche said. “But life isn’t always easy, especially on a cold winter day. That’s why Ferrellgas is proud to work with Operation Warm to donate these much-needed items in communities Ferrellgas serves. We’re excited to see what we can accomplish together.”

Founded in 1998, Operation Warm has served more than 4 million children across the U.S. and Canada. With the launch of Warm Soles in 2021, the organization now provides high-quality athletic shoes to children in need as well.

“We are proud to partner with Ferrellgas to help them support their communities,” Operation Warm Executive Director Grace Sica said. “They truly understand the value of warmth and how it factors into the overall well-being of children and families.”

Zertuche said Ferrellgas aligns itself with Operation Warm’s tagline ‘more than a coat,’ which means the coats provide more than physical warmth, but also emotional warmth, the confidence to socialize and succeed and hope for a brighter future.

Oil & Energy Service Professionals (OESP) is seeking presentations for the 2022 Eastern Energy Expo (EEE), set for May 22-25, 2022 at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT. The deadline is Jan. 14, 2022. For more info, click here. EEE is also seeking sponsorships.

OESP also announced the “2022 Care to Ride for Ralph” event will be held during EEE on Monday May 23 in Uncasville, CT. The ride is in memory of Ralph C. Adams III, who passed away in 2020. All proceeds will go to Oil Heat Cares. To create an individual or team for the ride, visit here and click on “Join.”

OESP also issued a “save the date” for the Spring 2022 Board of Directors meeting. It will be held March 17–20 in Mystic, CT. Click here for hotel info.

American Residential Services (ARS), a provider of air conditioning, heating, and plumbing services, is honoring active and former Military across the country with its ARS Cares Saluting Our Veterans program. More than 25 veterans and their families will be the recipients of a new HVAC system or water heater in advance of the winter months.

“ARS Cares Saluting Our Veterans program is all about recognizing the selfless sacrifice on behalf of our veterans as they serve our country,” said Scott Boose, CEO, ARS/Rescue Rooter. “To read the nominations and see the outpouring of support communities have for these brave men and women was heartwarming. It is our honor to do this for them, and we hope this small token of recognition demonstrates our gratitude and appreciation for all they have done.”

The Sandles family received a new HVAC system to surprise veteran William Sandles

Following ARS’ announcement on Sept. 29, family, friends and co-workers were invited to share stories of why they felt the nominees were deserving of home improvements that would help provide a higher quality of life at home, under the ARS Cares Saluting Our Veterans program. Local ARS branches then selected recipients and installations began in November. In addition to the Saluting Our Veterans Program, ARS is also committed to the hiring of Veterans. Since 2017, ARS has hired at least 250 veterans annually and is looking to double that number in 2022.

Below are a few examples of deserving recipients across the U.S.:

  • Sgt. 1st Class David Munoz has served in the Military for over 18 years, having enlisted right out of high school in 2003. During an 18-month deployment to Iraq, he earned a Medal of Valor for defusing a bomb with his bare hands. He works full-time for the National Guard and has a second job at a fast-food restaurant so he can buy equipment for a nonprofit that helps to prevent suicide among veterans. Munoz also volunteers his time by performing demonstrations as a paratrooper, skydiving out of WW2 C-47 Aircrafts with the Round Canopy Parachute team.
  • Retired Korean War Army Corporal, William Sandles, is 90 years old and has survived two bouts of colon cancer. He is currently in rehabilitation, hoping to be released this month to be reunited with his wife of 64 years, whom he has not seen since August. ARS/Rescue Rooter Houston installed a brand-new HVAC system to ensure Mr. Sandles recovers in a well-cooled and ventilated home.
  • Shaun Garry, United States Army veteran, was nominated to receive a new HVAC system by a close friend. Garry was medically discharged from the armed forces after being in five IED – improvised explosive device – explosions. Garry is also the recipient of over 14 medals, ribbons, and badges, including the Purple Heart.

The ARS Cares initiative launched in 2016 and has led to more than 150 home services makeovers. Visit ars.com/ars-cares.

Source: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/american-residential-services-ars-network-of-brands-surprises-veterans-with-home-services-makeovers-301425572.html

Women in Energy is continuing its Webinar Wednesdays. Started in 2018, each webinar begins at 12:15 pm (EST) and lasts for 30-45 minutes. All webinars are presented by WE’s Corporate and Individual members and other industry experts.

Members have access to all of the recorded webinars, including the 2021 Virtual Conference and other industry events. They are located in the Member Section of WE’s website.

Several upcoming webinars will be “intros” to the Energy Industry – from fossil fuels to green energies. These intros are designed to provide the basics. These are great sessions for CSRs, sales people and new employees. The intros will be included in WE’s new 2022 self-paced Learning Center, set to be launched in 2022.

Upcoming Webinar Wednesday schedule:

  • Nov 17: Best Practices for the Sales Process by by David Heiser, PriMedia (RSVP here: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/4913272580866983437)
  • Dec 1: Tackling the Need for Energy Employees
  • Dec 8: Residential/Commercial Heating & Cooling101 by Robert O’Brien
  • Dec 15: Knowing the Facts about SS-Medicare
  • Jan 12: Introduction to Solar Energy
  • Jan 19: Geothermal 101

Visit https://wewomeninenergy.com/events/webinar-wednesdays/

Article courtesy The Legislative Gazette

Gov. Kathy Hochul signed two new laws that will phase out the use of grade-6 fuel oil and coal tar paving materials — two substances that contribute to air, soil and water pollution in New York.

The first bill (S.2936-a/A.5029-a) was sponsored by Sen. Todd Kaminsky, D-Long Beach, and Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, D-Scarsdale. This bill phases out the use of grade 6 oil fuel for heating buildings in New York state, starting July 1, 2023.

The second bill (S.4095-b/A.518-a), sponsored by Sen. James Sanders Jr., D-Queens, and Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal, D-Manhattan, prohibits the use and sale of pavement materials that contain coal tar.

“The harmful effects of climate change and pollution have only heightened the importance of protecting the well-being of New Yorkers and the preservation of our state’s environment,” Governor Hochul said. “This legislation takes important steps to ensure that New Yorkers have access to clean water and a breathable environment free of harmful pollutants.”

Grade 6 oil refers to a highly viscous oil that’s left over from the production of crude oil. This grade of oil — used mostly in large commercial applications under burn permits that are grandfathered in — is cheap but also dirty and among the most harmful to the environment. It has been phased out in New York City completely, with 5,300 buildings using grade 6 oil fuel transitioning into a more environmentally-friendly fuel in 2016.

When combusted, it creates soot: incompletely combusted hydrocarbon particles that contain polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs, alongside other contaminants that contribute air pollution and harm respiratory health.

PAHs are a class of chemicals that naturally occur in fuels such as gasoline, crude oil, and coal. When these materials, as well as garbage, wood or tobacco are combusted, they release PAHs that can bind into small particulates in the air. The contaminants that come from the combustion of oil fuel are both carcinogenic and harmful to people’s respiratory systems. Alongside PAHs, grade 6 oil fuel contains “heavy metals, nitric oxide, sulfur dioxide, nickel, and black carbon,” that contribute to soot’s makeup.

According to the Governor’s Office and the bill sponsors, there are alternative energy sources for building heating that are not only less harmful to the environment but also cost less. Because of this, the use of grade 6 oil fuel will be prohibited starting July 1, 2023.

“This legislation takes aim at one of the prime causes of climate change and extreme weather: air pollution,” said Paulin, the Assembly sponsor of the bill.” Fuel oil grade number 6 releases extremely harmful pollutants into our air.

The second bill focuses on coal tar-based pavement sealants, materials used for paving roads that contain benzo(a)pyrene alongside other harmful PAHs that have been classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as carcinogenic, “particularly in children” as well as harmful to wildlife.

Recent studies conducted by the U.S. Geological Survey have shown that, while levels of most common environmental pollutants in waterways are consistently declining, levels of pollutants found in coal tar sealants are increasing.

These carcinogens leach into soils and waterways through runoff, posing a toxic threat to waterways and aquatic life. Chemicals associated with coal tar-based sealants have also been identified in house dust at “alarming levels,” according to the Governor’s Office.

Under the new law, coal tar-based sealants will not be available for sale after Nov. 8, 2022 and they will be illegal to use after Nov 8. 2023.

Suburban Propane Partners, L.P. announced the launch of the Homesential Home Protection Program in New Jersey. Homesential allows consumers to build their own home warranty coverage bundle with simple 1-2-3 pricing, no deductibles, no fees on service calls and no out-of-pocket payments for repairs of heating, air conditioning and/or interior electrical. Each coverage type has the same low monthly cost, and customers not only save by bundling two or more together, but get the added benefit of aggregating the annual coverage limit under the warranty.

The launch includes a sponsorship of Rutgers Athletics and its new brand ambassador Eric LeGrand, a Rutgers alumnus and noted philanthropist. The sponsorship will run through 2023 and will include stadium signage, as well as radio and digital ads throughout the men’s football and men’s and women’s basketball seasons.

“Suburban Propane is thrilled to join Rutgers Athletics, for the launch of Homesential, a new home-warranty product in our home state of New Jersey,” said Nandini Sankara, Spokesperson, Suburban Propane. “It’s an honor to work with Rutgers inspirational alumnus Eric LeGrand at this top-rated national university. We wish the Scarlet Knights continued success this season and beyond.”

“Rutgers Athletics welcomes Homesential to our family of partners, and we are certainly proud that such an innovative company has come on board. We look forward to working with the Homesential team for many years to come,” said Ryan Gottlieb, Associate Athletic Director, Rutgers University.

In addition, Homesential has inked a partnership with Eric LeGrand to serve as brand ambassador. In October of 2010, Rutgers football star Eric LeGrand sustained a spinal cord injury at his C3 and C4 vertebrae during a fourth quarter play at MetLife Stadium. Since then, LeGrand has been a leader and advocate for those living with spinal cord injuries.

“I’m very excited to be a part of the Homesential team, especially right here in New Jersey. It is very important that our home equipment is working up to par, but if there is an issue, knowing that there is a solution with Homesential is a breath of fresh air,” said Eric LeGrand.

Homesential will pay homage to LeGrand’s retired jersey number by donating $52 to Team LeGrand, LeGrand’s non-profit organization dedicated to raising funds for the Christopher & Dana Reeves Foundation, for every turnover that the Rutgers football team’s defense secures this season.

Visit www.homesential.com.

Oatey Co., a leading plumbing manufacturer since 1916, recently partnered with nonprofit organization Miracle Mechanical to make one deserving veteran’s hope a reality through significant HVAC and plumbing repairs. Miracle Mechanical was founded by contractor Brent Ridley with the mission of uplifting families and communities through plumbing and HVAC repairs at no cost to recipients.

“The whole premise of Miracle Mechanical is to help – veterans with disabilities, elderly people and those in need,” said Ridley. “Generous sponsors like Oatey give us the means to transform people’s everyday quality of life.”

The recent Oatey-sponsored Miracle Mechanical project provided much-needed help to Cindy Koehler, a U.S. Air Force veteran who has battled multiple sclerosis (MS) and debilitating physical challenges for the past three decades. Koehler lacked clean drinking water for several years due to her home’s failing water filtration system. Rust, germs and other dangerous contaminants polluted the household water supply, making it completely unsafe to consume.

Through Oatey’s sponsorship, Ridley’s team was able to purchase and install brand new appliances, including an electric water heater, two ADA-compliant toilets and a state-the-art water filtration system – ensuring Cindy and her family have access to the best quality water.

“Something as simple as clean running water, being able to flush a toilet and wash dishes brought tears in my eyes and joy to my heart,” said Koehler. “Never in my wildest dreams did I think this would happen.”

“Improving lives is a core tenet of our mission here at Oatey,” explained Katherine Lehtinen, Oatey’s Senior VP, Brand & Digital Marketing. “When we heard about Cindy’s story, we were thrilled to have the opportunity to help. We’re honored to be a part of such an impactful project and make such a big difference for a U.S. Air Force veteran.”

Visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rdFKdKdE1mI

Johnson Controls has created partnerships with Strayer University and All-In Milwaukee, building on the company’s ongoing educational initiatives. Terms of the investment were not disclosed. Johnson Controls will provide tuition assistance, internship opportunities and mentoring to underserved student populations in Milwaukee, with a goal of expanding these opportunities more broadly across the U.S. The partnerships represent Johnson Controls ongoing investment in essential skilled trades education, including technician training for HVAC, fire and security and digital building automation systems as well as finance, supply chain and information technology (IT).

Through Strayer University’s Grads to Work program, Johnson Controls will select four high school graduates from the Milwaukee area to be recipients of Johnson Controls-funded tuition for an associate degree in either Accounting or IT at Strayer University along with a paid internship at Johnson Controls. The program is currently in its pilot phase with the opportunity to expand in the future to serve underrepresented students beyond the Milwaukee area. Johnson Controls has also begun a partnership with All-In Milwaukee and will be selecting students for internships and mentoring.

“Johnson Controls is the global leader in sustainable facilities management through our products, technology, software and services, but it’s up to the next generation to carry forward our mission of sustainability and help realize a net zero carbon world,” said Katie McGinty, VP & Chief Sustainability and External Relations Officer of Johnson Controls. “We want to equip students with the knowledge and expertise needed to be successful in making our society cleaner, healthier, more sustainable and more efficient. Our goal is to help ambitious, deserving students break through barriers and overcome challenges that may prevent them from pursuing a full-time career as a technician. Through these partnerships, we aim to make career paths in systems and digital solutions more accessible while increasing diversity and inclusion within our industry. We will continue looking for opportunities to invest in important educational initiatives.”

Further, Johnson Controls is supporting a success coach to help Milwaukee Area Technical College students succeed in HVAC coursework and strengthen industry connections through efforts like networking events, field trips and guest speakers.

The demand for HVAC technicians continues to rise due to industry growth and the need for new and renovated buildings, Johnson Controls said. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), HVAC jobs will be added at a rate of 4% through 2029. Additionally, the Biden Administration announced ambitious energy efficiency efforts earlier this year, including investments in heating and cooling technology, research into smart buildings and initiatives to make buildings more sustainable. As the U.S. shifts toward a cleaner economy, the next generation of technicians will need specialized skills that will help combat environmental changes. Finance, supply chain and IT professionals with these skills will also be sought after to support the move to a more eco-friendly future.

“We’re proud to bring the Grads to Work program to a forward-thinking company such as Johnson Controls in their effort to provide employment and educational opportunities in Milwaukee,” said Strayer University President Andrea Backman. “Providing young adults with educational pathways at no cost as they navigate the workforce, many for the first time, is critical to increasing their economic mobility.”

“All-In Milwaukee is thrilled to partner with Johnson Controls to develop the future, diverse workforce of Milwaukee,” said All-in-Milwaukee’s Executive Director Allison Wagner. “With Johnson Controls’ internships and mentors, our scholars will graduate college with the skills and experiences needed to be successful in career. We are grateful for Johnson Controls urgency and All-In Milwaukee Board Member Olivier Leonetti’s leadership to develop this new partnership. The All-In promise is to transform Milwaukee by supporting our students to complete college and build their careers. Career partners, like Johnson Controls, ensure a vibrant Milwaukee when they invest in our scholars and support their career development with internships and mentors. Both are essential for diverse, young talent to enter the workforce and transform our city.”

Earlier this year, Johnson Controls launched the Johnson Controls Community College Partnership Program which includes an investment of $15 million over the next five years to support academic programs at non-profit community colleges. The investment will fund the purchase of classroom materials, learning technologies and student scholarships. Local Johnson Controls employees will also serve as volunteer educators and mentors to students.

Visit: https://www.johnsoncontrols.com/corporate-sustainability/community.