State Energy Offices’ Role in Grid Resilience
State Energy Offices play a key role in enhancing energy security and grid resilience across the nation. State Energy Directors conduct comprehensive energy planning at the direction of the Governor or Legislature to establish a strategy or framework to meet current and future energy needs in a cost-effective manner, enhance energy system reliability, expand economic opportunity, and address environmental quality.
Through the Infrastructure, Investment, and Jobs Act (IIJA) State Energy Offices lead the update of the State Energy Security Plans (SESP) under Section 40108. SESPs serve as the foundation of resilience planning by identifying threats, hazards, and vulnerabilities as well as outlining mitigation efforts. In the majority of states, State Energy Offices have also been designated by the Governor as lead agency for the implementation of the formula grants to States and Tribes to prevent outages and enhance the resilience of the electric grid under Section 40101(d).
State Energy Offices coordinate with State Emergency Management Agencies on energy security, resilience funding, and energy emergency response. In their role as convenors of energy sector stakeholders, State Energy Offices are often engaged with investor-and-consumer-owned utilities, the private sector, community groups, universities, labor unions, Tribes, among others – a critical aspect of implementing the IIJA grid resilience and SESP efforts, which will include all of these groups.