Texas has a longstanding reputation as the home of the oil and gas industry in America and today, the designation still applies: in 2018, the state accounted for 40 percent of oil produced in the United States. Accordingly, major cities in Texas are also hubs for the operations of America’s fossil fuel industry. But few people are aware that Houston, the largest city in Texas, leads the country in the use of renewable energy: the City of Houston sources 92 percent of its power from wind and solar energy! Beyond using renewable sources of energy, more than half of Houston’s municipal vehicle fleet is made up of hybrid electric-powered cars or trucks, cementing Houston’s growing reputation as a leader in renewable energy.
Houston is just one example of how, despite a historic association with the oil and gas industry, cities and counties in Texas (and across America) are committing themselves to using sustainable forms of energy. As a result, many opportunities to provide renewable energy-related goods and services exist across Texas for vendors. In this article we will review how vendors can register to work with the state of Texas and the City of Houston, and where they can find bids related to renewable energy.
Becoming a vendor with the state of Texas
To register with the state of Texas’ Centralized Master Bidder List (CMBL), vendors must first visit the state Comptroller website and learn about the criteria vendors must meet in order to be registered. Requirements for registration include:
- Vendors must be in good standing with the state;
- If applicable, the vendor’s franchise tax account status must be active;
- Vendors must provide the Comptroller’s office with an Employer Identification Number (EIN).
Potential vendors must also provide the business structure and company ownership details about their enterprise.
Becoming a vendor with the City of Houston
Interested vendors must complete the online registration process and register as a city vendor, vendors will then need to provide their W-9 information to the City. Once registered, vendors should know that Houston uses six separate types of solicitations, including Purchase Orders, Emergency Purchase Orders, formal and informal bids, RFPs, construction contracts that fall under a $500,000 threshold, and Purchasing Cards for urgent or last-minute purchases.
For a complete guide on how to become a registered vendor with the City of Houston, check out the comprehensive overview available here.
Finding Renewable Energy Opportunities
Texas has undertaken several initiatives to promote the use of renewable energy both at the state and municipal level. The City of Houston has developed an ambitious Climate Action Plan with the goal of reducing the city’s greenhouse gas emissions and to take measures to prevent and mitigate the negative effects of climate change. (Houston adopted the plan after the landing of Hurricane Harvey in 2017, which saw the city devastated by major floods and the largest recorded rain event in North American history.)
As a result of renewable energy initiatives being adopted across Texas, there are many opportunities available for vendors in the sector to provide goods and services. Some of the bids related to renewable energy can include:
- Solar power equipment and maintenance (including solar cells)
- Recycled energy collection equipment and supplies
- Wind electrical generating equipment and accessories
- Electric vehicle parts and charging stations
- And many more.
Government purchasing of renewable energy-related goods and services is done by individual cities and counties, as well as at the state level. Vendors should take the time to review municipal and state websites to find out more about relevant bids in the area of Texas where they want to work.
Using a bid service to find renewable energy bids
As a vendor, using a bid service to help track down and evaluate bid opportunities just makes good sense. BidNet members receive daily notifications about relevant bids in a convenient email notification, making it simple to browse bid opportunities and choose the ones that they want to pursue. By taking the legwork out of tracking down and evaluating hundreds or even thousands of bid opportunities in the renewable energy sector, BidNet helps businesses focus on finding the right bid and freeing up the time they need to write winning proposals.