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Data Points Series

Blog Post | June 10, 2016

Energy efficiency makes Clean Power Plan goals very achievable

The Environmental Protection Agency has finalized state-specific limits on greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector. States can get most, if not all, of the emission savings they need by reducing the amount of electricity they are currently wasting. In the graph below, the light orange bars show that the listed states can achieve more than half of EPA’s 2030 limits with a few modest energy efficiency measures: 1% annual savings target, updated building codes, and 100 MW of new combined heat and power.

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Blog Post | May 20, 2016

Explaining the unique energy burden of low-income households

In a recent report released by ACEEE and Energy Efficiency for All, Lifting the High Energy Burden in America’s Largest Cities, we measured energy burdens in 48 of the largest cities in the United States. Energy burden means the percentage of household income that goes toward energy costs, and we looked specifically at utility energy bills (transportation energy costs are also a significant household expense, but it was outside the scope of the analysis).

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Blog Post | May 12, 2016

Huge progress on lighting efficiency improvements

Several recent sets of data show large improvements in lighting energy efficiency in recent years. First, DOE has commissioned two US Lighting Market Characterization studies – one with data on installed lighting in 2001, the other with data on installed lighting in 2012.

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Blog Post | April 29, 2016

Making sense of commercial-sector energy use data

Commercial-sector energy use in the US increased by 63% from 1979 to 2012, rising from total source energy use of 10.6 quads in 1979 to a peak of 18.4 quads in 2008 before declining to 17.4 quads in 2012.  This growth can largely be attributed to a corresponding increase in commercial building floor area, which grew by 70% over the same period. But that is only part of the story. As the graph below illustrates, as floor area has trended upward over time, energy use per square foot has gone up and down, peaking in the 1999-2003 period but declining since then.

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Blog Post | April 22, 2016

Intelligent efficiency & continual commissioning

One of the more vexing challenges for those in the energy efficiency program sector is ensuring that savings resulting from the implementation of an efficiency measure persist over time. Fortunately, a solution exists: intelligent efficiency can prevent the degradation of energy savings, and in some instances increase savings over time.

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Blog Post | April 15, 2016

We’re tracking major US energy efficiency metrics on a new webpage. Check out how 2015 measures up.

Ever wondered just how much energy we consume to power our economy? To keep our buildings working, machines humming, and wheels running? Are we really energy smart as a country?

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Blog Post | April 7, 2016

Saluting Tom Eckman: an IRP legend announces retirement

Ask just about anyone involved in the utility energy efficiency industry where the best utility system integrated resource planning (IRP) is conducted, and they’ll say it’s the Pacific Northwest. And ask anyone familiar with that work what name comes to mind in connection with that effort, and it’s Tom Eckman.

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Blog Post | March 25, 2016

For low-cost savings that benefit ratepayers and the planet alike, utilities embrace efficiency

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.

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Blog Post | March 18, 2016

Electricity savings from coast to coast

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.

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Blog Post | March 4, 2016

The long road to today's CAFE standards

Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for cars and light trucks, first adopted in 1975 in the wake of the OPEC oil embargo, resulted in a doubling of average new vehicle fuel economy a decade later. Following that period of rapid advance were two decades of stagnant fuel economy standards.

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