In a recent letter, Tony Occhionero, executive director of the American Gas Cooling Center (AGCC), expressed concern to Bill Richardson, Secretary of Energy, indicating the need “to clearly identify integrated heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems as a strategy now to avoid future power outages similar to those that occurred in the summer of 1999.”

The outages occurred last year during periods of extreme heat and humidity when power and air conditioning loads were at their highest, as outlined in the final report of the U.S. Department of Energy Power Outage Study Team (POST) in March 2000.

Occhionero contends integrated systems should be in the recommendations by POST to enhance electric grid reliability, referring to the combination of the best electric and gas hvac for a particular building to increase efficiency, reduce operating cost, reduce overall emissions, provide greater reliability, and enhance comfort.