Project Director: Val Stori

Contact: Val Stori,

The heating and cooling sector accounts for over forty percent of the nation’s energy use. CESA’s renewable thermal project works with member states to evaluate renewable heating and cooling technologies and develop policies and programs that support best practices to further develop the market for renewable thermal technologies.

The project currently covers the following technologies: advanced biomass heating systems, air source heat pumps, ground source heat pumps, and solar thermal. CESA members are interested in learning more about these relatively new technologies, including their overall efficiency, performance, and emissions attributes. In addition to system performance, states are interested in the sustainability of feedstocks (wood pellets), air quality impacts, and project costs. Lastly, several state members have adopted, or are in various stages of pursuing, thermal provisions for state Renewable Portfolio Standards. CESA involvement with RPS thermal provisions has mostly fallen under our State-Federal RPS Collaborative project.

The renewable heating and cooling project was originally focused on wood biomass thermal technologies. CESA members discussed and explored biomass thermal system efficiency, emissions, testing, and standards. CESA published a members-only biomass thermal storage report, which explored the use of thermal storage in Europe, its effect on emissions and efficiency, and recommended potential future action to better understand thermal storage's impact on emissions and efficiency.

Currently, the renewable heating and cooling project is working with CESA members to accelerate the renewable heating and cooling market. Activities include drafting consumer education guides, publishing case studies, and discussing best practices and lessons learned from state renewable thermal programs.