Research & Pilots

Focus on Energy supports energy efficiency and renewable energy research and screening of new solutions through its EERD and Pilot offerings. Below you will find information and links to active research and pilot initiatives. To learn more about past research and pilot initiatives, a searchable archive can be found below. 

Environmental & Economic Research and Development Program (EERD)

Focus on Energy supports energy efficiency and renewable energy research through the Environmental & Economic Research and Development Program (EERD). EERD research projects allow Wisconsin to further its efforts towards reducing energy waste, costs, and environmental impacts. EERD projects are selected through a targeted competitive request for proposals (RFP) process that occurs approximately once per year. Focus on Energy also accepts research concepts or ideas on a rolling basis. The 2020 Request for Concept Papers has closed. Please email focusinfo@focusonenergy.com for more information.

Active EERD Projects

  • Multifamily and Single-Family Air Source Heat Pumps (ASHP) Research – Q2 2021
  • Cold Climate Variable Refrigerant Flow (VRF) Program Study – Q2 2021
  • Next Generation C&I Program: Energy Management Information Systems (EMIS) – Q2 2021
  • Residential Dehumidification in Wisconsin – Usage and Energy Efficiency Investigation – Q4 2021

Recently Completed EERD projects

Energy Efficiency and Load Shaping

Cold Climate Variable Refrigerant Flow

Energy Management Information Systems (EMIS)

Future Focus Initiative

Focus on Energy’s Future Focus process reviews new concepts and technologies that have the potential to expand the range and value of services available to Wisconsinites, as well as help the program achieve desired outcomes of energy savings, customer satisfaction, and/or market transformation. The process also helps test offerings for future expansion/inclusion in the Focus on Energy program portfolio. Concepts and technologies are screened on a quarterly basis and can be submitted here. Any questions about future opportunities may be directed to focusinfo@focusonenergy.com.

Active Pilots:

The Save to Give Challenge: The Save to Give Challenge, launched in January 2021, empowers rural Wisconsin communities to save energy while investing in local organizations. By changing habits at home, participants can reduce energy bills earning points towards a donation to a community selected local nonprofit. Learn more about the pilot. If you are a community interested in applying for Phase Two of the pilot, complete the application.

Virtual CommissioningTM: Launched in May 2021 in partnership with Xcel Energy, the Focus on Energy Virtual Commissioning (VCxTM) pilot provides an innovative way to help small to mid-sized businesses reduce their energy use without the need for an on-site visit or costly investments. On average, VCx can help businesses save 13% on their annual energy usage. Learn more about VCx including how it works and what participants to expect.

Multifamily Strategic Energy Management: Multifamily housing, comprising both owners and unit occupants, presents a unique challenge in the world of energy efficiency. Strategic Energy Management (SEM) is an innovative approach to saving energy, focusing on engaging coaching and collaborative group workshops, which has been successfully deployed in various commercial sectors. In collaboration with Madison Gas & Electric, this pilot will launch summer 2021.

Healthy Homes: Focus on Energy introduced the Healthy Homes pilot in January 2020. This effort provides healthy home assessments and home improvements to households with members suffering with pediatric asthma. Focus on Energy has partnered with healthcare providers in Wisconsin to identify eligible homes and seeks to facilitate long term partnerships with the healthcare industry to address the intersection of energy efficiency and healthy indoor environments.

Search Archive

Wisconsin Farm Biomass Production and the Emerging Carbon Economy

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Development of a Regional Wildlife Mapping Tool to Guide Renewable Wind Energy Project Siting in the Upper Mississippi River Basin's Driftless Area

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Measuring Vertical Fluxes of Gaseous Elemental Mercury in Wisconsin

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Changes in Biodiversity in Selected Natural Communities Related to Global Climate Change

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Evaluating Nocturnal Bird and Bat Migration in the Upper Mississippi River Valley and Its Implications for Siting Wind Energy Facilities: A Workshop Series for Resource Agencies and Wind Developers

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Impacts of Forest Management Activities on Carbon Sequestration and GHG Emissions

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Modeling the Effects of Forest Management Decisions on Carbon Sequestration

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Land Use and Ecological Consequences of a Wood Gasification Energy Facility at UW-Stevens Point: A Spatial Analysis with Statewide Consequences

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Using NEXRAD Weather Radar to Minimize the Impact of Wind Energy Farms on Migrating Birds

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Fate and Transport of Mercury in a Recovering Watershed

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Observing Carbon Fluxes and Potential Climate Change Impacts from Forest Land Management in Wisconsin

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Applying the Natural Heritage Inventory Classification System to Characterize the Natural Communities in the Ongoing Peatlands Study

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Impacts of Harvesting Woody Biomass on Nutrient Cycling and Biodiversity in Northern Hardwoods

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Maximizing Ecological Services and Economic Returns by Targeted Establishment of Biomass Yielding Grasslands in Wisconsin

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A Collaborative and Regional Analysis of Bird and Bat Mortality at Three Wind Farms in Southeastern Wisconsin

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Life Cycle Analysis of Pellet Fuels

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Assessing the Ecological Risk of Mercury Exposure to Common Loons

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Assessment of Photovoltaics at High Penetration on Peak Demand and Annual Energy Use

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Population-based Methylmercury Exposure Assessment

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Projecting Impacts of Greenhouse Gases on Carbon Sequestration by Wisconsin Forests

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Impacts of Past and Future Changes in Climate and Atmospheric CO2 in Wisconsin Agriculture

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Mercury in Power Plant Combustion By-Products

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Mercury Chemistry in Power Plant Plumes

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Impacts of Biomass Removal on Carbon and Nitrogen Cycling in Wisconsin Northern Hardwood Forests

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Energy Intensity and Environmental Impact of Integrated Dairy/Bioenergy Systems in Wisconsin

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Coordinated Energy Strategies for Climate and Air Quality

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Comparative Toxicity of Secondary Coal Combustion and Mobile Source Emissions in Wisconsin

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Evaluation of Fin Clips as a Non-lethal approach for Estimating Mercury Concentrations in Fish

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Quantifying Carbon Storage in Wisconsin

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Mercury in Selected Fish Species Over Time

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Downscaling Wind and Other Climatological Parameters of Relevance to Energy Production in Wisconsin

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State of the Science on the Ecological Effects of Transmission Line Siting and Construction

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The Impact of Sustainable Forest Management on Long-Term Biomass Production and Forest Health: The state of the science

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Consumer Adoption and Grid Impact Models for Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles in Wisconsin

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Quantifying the Economic and Ecological Aspects of Forest Biomass Harvesting in Wisconsin

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Climate Projections in Wisconsin

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Monitoring the Impact of Climate Change on Water Resources in the Northern Highland American Legion State Forest in Wisconsin

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Assessing Long-term Hydrologic Impacts of Climate Change Across Wisconsin

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Monitoring the Impacts of Climate Change on Water Resources in the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest in Wisconsin (NAHL): Phase II

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Lichen Bioaccumulation and Bioindicator Study near Alliant Energy Columbia Generating Facility

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Potential Effects of Climate Change on Inland Glacial Lakes and Implications for Lake Dependent Biota in Wisconsin

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Farmer's Willingness to Adopt Practices and Participate in Programs to Sequester Carbon

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Renewable Fuel Availability, Extraction and Usage Potential Impacts

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Assessing Sustainability of Switchgrass Production in Southwestern Wisconsin

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Carbon Sequestration on Private Forests: Understanding the Silent Majority

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Wisconsin NADP National Trends Network (NTN)

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Wisconsin Mercury Deposition Network (MDN)

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Economic and Environmental Impact of Biomass Types for Bioenergy Power Plants

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An Ecosystem Management Approach to Biomass Production in Southern Wisconsin

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Contributions of Fossil Fuel-Fired Electric Power Generation to PM2.5 Concentrations in Wisconsin

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Public Health Benefits in Wisconsin from Biomass Energy Production

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Impacts of Bioenergy Crop Production on Environmentally Sensitive Lands

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Identifying Tradeoffs Between Biomass Production and Biological Diversity in Wisconsin's Forests and Grasslands to Meet Tomorrow's Bioenergy and Biofuel Needs

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Identifying Climate Analogs and Potential Shifts in Forest Composition and Extent for Southern Wisconsin Under 21st Century Climate Change Scenarios

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Land-use, Soil Health, and Water Quality Changes with Woody Energy Crop Production in Wisconsin and Minnesota

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Impacts of Climate Change on Fluxes of Carbon and Water in Northern Wisconsin Lakes and Wetlands

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Shedding Light on the Commercial Lighting Market in Wisconsin

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An Assessment of Woody Biomass Harvests in Northern Wisconsin

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Observing Carbon Fluxes and Potential Climate Change Impacts from Forest Land Management

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Farm-based Bioenergy Infrastructure for Wisconsin: Too Big, Too Little or Just Right?

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Biogas Storage Farm AD Report

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Find and Flip: Motivating High Energy Users to Save Energy

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Wisconsin Building Code Analysis: Identifying Low-Cost, High-Impact Measures

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Mid-Sized Business Market Segmentation Report

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New homes Baseline and Market Characterization Study

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Small Embedded Data Centers in Wisconsin

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Ductless Mini-Split Heat Pump Market Assessment and Savings Review Report

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Characterizing the Renewable Energy Landscape in Wisconsin

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Light Level Analysis in Buildings

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