Energy Efficiency Over Time: Measuring and Valuing Lifetime Energy Savings in Policy and Planning

Research Report U1902


Rachel Gold and Seth Nowak


The lifetime of energy efficiency programs and measures ranges from a few months to several decades. Nevertheless, most energy efficiency policies are designed around the first year of savings. This report describes recent policy changes in some states and Canadian provinces to measure the value of energy savings over time. We also explore the challenges inherent in policies that encourage only short-term savings. More particularly, we suggest ways of improving measure lifetime estimates to make them more useful to cost-effectiveness testing, energy efficiency resource standards, performance incentives, and resource planning. We conclude with policy recommendations for program administrators and decision makers.