Energy Efficiency as a Resource
Electric energy efficiency programs have grown substantially in the last ten years. As they’ve grown, leaders have emerged. In our new report, Big Savers: Experiences and Recent History of Program Administrators Achieving High Levels of Energy Savings, we showcase 14 of these leaders. The report is not an exhaustive review of every leading utility or program administrator, nor is it a ranking system. Instead, we tell the story of these 14 through analysis of performance data and discussions with program managers.
Much like the proverbial ‘juice’ by which it’s often referred, electricity can go a long way for those who make a habit of squeezing every last drop of what they have. When everyone adopts this mindset, we all win, freeing up resources to dedicate to other critical needs. That’s the commonsense approach the utility sector has increasingly recognized and embraced over the years, harnessing efficiency to avoid or defer costs such as developing new energy supplies, building transmission infrastructure, and complying with environmental rules.
We tend to talk about energy savings in two ways. There is the total annual impact of savings, made up of layers of savings from programs implemented in the past but still saving energy today, and there are incremental savings, or savings attributed to new programs implemented in a given year. At ACEEE, we track incremental savings within our State Energy Efficiency Scorecard.
Utilities have options when it comes to meeting customer demand for electricity. They can build power plants to convert fossil fuels to energy. They can capture renewable resources like solar and wind. And they can work with residents and businesses to lower demand by implementing energy efficiency programs.
Electric utilities and independent statewide program administrators deliver a substantial share of efficiency programs across the country. Some utilities have delivered such programs for decades. Since the mid-2000s, though, the size and scope of the programs have grown dramatically. Today, utilities and administrators implement energy efficiency programs in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
On Wednesday, a group of Ohio policymakers released their recommendations to indefinitely freeze the state's clean energy and energy efficiency targets. Their misinformed recommendations, if implemented, would once again deliver a major setback to Ohio energy bill payers and the state's clean energy economy.
ACEEE Executive Director Testifying Before House Energy and Power Subcommittee Today on “The Economic Impacts of State Energy Policies”
Washington D.C.—At a congressional hearing today, Steven Nadel, executive director of ACEEE, said that “states are stepping out and leading energy efficiency efforts in the United States as a way to save energy, lower consumer bills, and promote economic development.”
In his testimony, Nadel noted that there are large opportunities for cost-effective energy efficiency investments, investments that can aid economic development by:
U.S. Places 13th Out of 16, Behind Australia, India, and South Korea; Germany Wins “World Cup” of Energy Efficiency: 2nd International Scorecard Evaluates 16 Leading World Economies on 31 Categories.
Washington, D.C.—Energy efficiency targets implemented in half of U.S. states in 2012 saved enough electricity to power 2 million homes for a year. These are the findings of Energy Efficiency Resource Standards: A New Progress Report on State Experience, a new report released today by ACEEE, based on the most recently available data. The report also finds that most states met or exceeded their targets and that the standards are making substantial contributions to national energy savings.