On March 18th, ACEEE released its 8th report as part of our series of state clean energy studies, entitled North Carolina’s Energy Future: Electricity, Water, and Transportation Efficiency. On the same day, Vice President Biden spoke nearby at CREE, an LED lighting manufacturer, highlighting the local company as a model of job opportunities in the clean-tech industry.
ACEEE released the new report for North Carolina at a press event at Southern Energy Management, a local energy efficiency and solar company based in Durham, North Carolina. ACEEE staff Neal Elliott, Maggie Eldridge, and Shruti Vaidyanathan delivered the report results. Lieutenant Governor Walter Dalton, Southern Energy Management co-founder Maria Kingery, State Representative Pricey Harrison, State Senator Josh Stein, and CREE Vice President Chris James all spoke at the event, in addition to the thirty to forty additional stakeholders in attendance. ACEEE staff also presented the results to the state’s newly-appointed Energy Policy Council and plans to continue to work with the Council on the report’s findings and recommendations.
The report is the first in ACEEE’s series of state energy efficiency studies to examine linkages between electricity, water, and transportation efficiency. North Carolina is one of the fastest growing states in the country, which the study shows will put strain on energy, water, and transportation system resources. The report finds that investments in energy and water efficiency resources can meet a substantial portion of the state’s future energy demands by 2025 – nearly 25% of the state’s electricity needs by 2025 and 10% of transportation fuel needs – while creating 38,000 net jobs and saving consumers $3.6 billion in lower energy and water bills. The study highlights a suite of policy opportunities for the state, including a stand-alone Energy Efficiency Resource Standard (EERS), vehicle miles traveled (VMT) reduction policies, and updated energy and water codes and standards for new building construction in the state.