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September 14, 2007 A Penton Media Publication Vol. 6, No. 17


CONTENTS
TVA to Hire Electricians to Build Nuclear Reactors

North Carolina Sets Requirements for Renewable Power

Congress Prepares to Fund
Green Initiatives

NEMA Lighting Systems Index Remains Below 2006 Levels

City in California Requests Bids for Demolition and Construction Project

Atlanta Airport Tunnel Project

Business Brief

OSHA Cites Lockout/Tagout Violations at Laundry Facility

NECA 2007 Convention and Trade Show

CEA Industry Forum

Electric Expo '07

EC&M Code Change Conferences


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    Around the Circuit
    TVA to Hire Electricians to Build Nuclear Reactors
    For the first time in two decades, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) is preparing to hire contract workers. TVA officials predict it will need more than 500 contract electricians to build the Watts Bar Unit 2 nuclear reactor, starting in 2008. By the time that reactor is finished being built in 2013, TVA expects to need a comparable number of workers to build each of two reactors tentatively planned for the Bellefonte nuclear site in Alabama. "There should be a good demand for workers for years to come," says Dwight Wilhoit, president of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Local 175 in Chattanooga, Tenn. "Everybody who wants to work right now has work. Especially in the South, we're looking to stay busy for some time."


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    North Carolina Sets Requirements for Renewable Power
    North Carolina Governor Mike Easley recently signed a bill that sets a minimum requirement for the use of renewable energy by the state's electric utilities. Under the terms of the bill, investor-owned utilities will be required to draw on renewable energy for 3% of their electricity supply starting in 2012, with the requirement increasing every three years until it reaches 12.5% of the electricity supply in 2021. Electric cooperatives and municipal utilities must also draw on renewable energy for 3% of their electricity supply by 2018.

    The bill allows credit for the use of solar, wind, geothermal, and biomass energy sources, along with hydropower, ocean current energy, and wave energy. It also allows for the use of hydrogen produced from any of these renewable resources.


    Congress Prepares to Fund
    Green Initiatives

    Congress may spend as much as $6.7 billion next fiscal year to combat global warming. House appropriations bills call for about $2 billion in new spending on initiatives aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions and oil dependency, including $44 million to promote geothermal energy. Some of the largest increases are in the bill that funds the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The House provided about $1.9 billion for energy-efficiency and renewable energy programs. The Senate's appropriations committee has recommended about $1.7 billion for energy-efficiency and renewable energy programs. This fall, Congress is also expected to consider legislation to cap emissions from power plants and other sources.


    NEMA Lighting Systems Index Remains Below 2006 Levels
    Rosslyn, Va.-based National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) recently released its Lighting Systems Index for the second quarter of 2007. The Index is a composite measure of lamps, luminaires, ballasts, emergency lighting, exit signs, and other lighting products shipped nationally and internationally from the United States by the 430 NEMA member companies. The current Index indicates a 0.7% increase over first-quarter 2007 performance; however, overall shipments are still below the levels experienced throughout most of 2006. The slump in the single-family housing market was first evident in the Index in the fourth quarter of 2006 and continues to weigh it down. The slight increase in the current Index can be attributed to the health of the commercial, industrial, and non-building construction sectors.


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    Project Watch
    City in California Requests Bids for Demolition and Construction Project
    The City of Firebaugh, Calif., is soliciting bids for modifications to a water treatment plant. Scope of work includes demolition and removal of existing facilities as well as construction of new facilities, including all electrical items. Bids will be accepted until 11 a.m. PST on Oct. 4. A mandatory pre-bid conference will be held at 10 a.m. PST on Sept. 24 at the Firebaugh Community Center. For more information, contact the City Manager, 1575 Eleventh St., Firebaugh, CA 93622.


    Atlanta Airport Tunnel Project
    Holder-Manhattan-Moody-Hunt (HMMH), Atlanta, is seeking contractors for the Automated People Mover (APM) tunnels associated with the Maynard H. Jackson Jr. International Terminal APM extension from Concourse E. The scope of work is limited to tunneling operations using the New Austrian Tunneling Method (NATM) and limited utility work. For more information and to request a prequalification package, contact Chad Douglas at (770) 988-3257. The project's RFP is scheduled to be released in early October.


    ADVERTISEMENT
    ClearTrax Lay-In Connectors
    ILSCO has introduced ClearTrax® lay-in connectors. ClearTrax range-taking connectors feature easy lay-in installation of aluminum or copper conductors and accommodate a wire range of 1000kcmil - 6. Benefits are a faster and safer connection resulting from reduced cable manipulation during installation. Fabricated from 6061-T6 aluminum alloy to ensure strength and conductivity, ClearTrax is clear plated for low contact resistance. The compact body is designed as a single piece and is engineered for heat dissipation. www.ilsco.com


    Web Exclusives
    Business Brief
    Tampa, Fla.-based Building Industry Consulting Service International (BICSI) was recently approved to provide continuing education and training through the Registered Continuing Education Providers Program (RCEPP), a comprehensive education management system for the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) and the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC). With the RCEPP designation, BICSI will help to provide leadership in professional licensure of engineers and land surveyors through excellence in uniform laws, licensing standards, and professional ethics.

    For more business briefs, visit EC&M's Web site.


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    Eye on Safety
    OSHA Cites Lockout/Tagout Violations at Laundry Facility
    Following an investigation into the March 2007 death of a worker at the Cintas laundry facility in Tulsa, Okla., the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recently issued fines totaling $2.78 million, the largest ever levied against a company in the service industry. Eleazar Torres-Gomez, who was clearing a jam of wet laundry on a conveyor that carries the laundry from the washer into the dryer, was killed after being trapped in the operating dryer for 20 minutes while temperatures soared to 300°F.

    OSHA inspectors issued 46 willful, instance-by-instance citations that allege violations of the lockout/tagout standard for failing to shut down and to lock out power to the equipment before clearing jams, and for failing to train four employees responsible for clearing jams in lockout/tagout procedures. One repeat citation alleges the failure to protect employees from being struck or pinned by the conveyor. Three serious citations allege the failure to protect employees from falls, to have a qualified person inspect the lockout/tagout procedures, and to certify the procedures as required.

    OSHA also inspected the company's facility in Columbus, Ohio, as well as ones in Arkansas, Alabama, and Washington. The agency issued five repeat and two serious citations with penalties totaling $117,500 for violations of the lockout/tagout and machine guarding standards found at the Columbus facility. In response to the citations, Cintas CEO Scott Farmer said in a statement that the company has been cooperating with OSHA to review the incidents, but didn't agree with "certain citations and fines."


    Shows and Events
    NECA 2007 Convention and Trade Show
    The National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) will hold its annual trade show and convention from Oct. 5-8 in San Francisco. Topics for sessions at this year's event include photovoltaics, building green, lighting design, design/build strategies, project labor agreements, customer service, and codes and standards. For more information and to register, visit the NECA Web site.


    CEA Industry Forum
    The Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) Industry Forum is scheduled for Oct. 14-17 in San Diegoe. The four-day event will include seminars on marketing and building business, as well as the effect of fire on electronic devices. In addition, attendees are encouraged to sign up for one-on-one sessions with CEA analysts. For more information and to register, visit the CEA Web site.


    Electric Expo '07
    The Electrical Association of Philadelphia will present Electric Expo '07 from Oct. 16-17 at the Valley Forge ConvenBtion Center, King of Prussia, Pa. The event includes seminars on topics such as LEED, CCTV and fire protection for electrical contractors, lighting control for commercial buildings, power quality, home automation, and arc flash hazard reduction. For more information and to register, visit the event's Web site.


    EC&M Code Change Conferences
    Where do you turn when you need accurate information on changes to the National Electrical Code? Acknowledged as the leaders in providing information on the NEC, EC&M magazine and EC&M Seminars have been the preferred sources of this information for more than 60 years. Seven Code change conferences have been scheduled in the fall of 2007. Host cities include: Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Orlando, Philadelphia, St. Louis, and Seattle.

    As an approved provider with the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES), through its Registered Continuing Education Provider Program (RCEPP), our 2008 Code change conferences will provide professional engineers Professional Development Hours (PDHs), a requirement for re-licensing in many states. The conferences are also approved by every state that has a continuing education requirement for contractors and electricians.

    For additional information on the dates and locations of these events, download a pdf of the schedule from the EC&M Web site.

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