In light of a recent UN report on climate change, the need for energy efficiency has taken on even more urgency. Scientists warn that to avert the damages of global warming, we need to make massive changes to the way that we live our lives. The 2018 UN report says it will take nothing less than “rapid, far-reaching and unprecedented changes in all aspects of society.”
Devastating hurricanes like Andrew and Katrina have resulted in new disaster-mitigation efforts as communities rebuild buildings and infrastructure. The recent deluge of hurricanes in Texas, Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands also offer an opportunity to use state-of-the art strategies to improve rebuilt communities’ ability to withstand future natural disasters.
These resilience strategies include energy efficiency measures. According to a recent newsletter from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Policy Development & Research, materials and technologies that enhance buildings’ energy efficiency can also make them more durable and resilient to hurricanes and other natural disaster.
When you marry technology to energy-saving initiatives, you get intelligent efficiency. This concept, which was first coined by ACEEE, is now poised to create significant energy savings in every sector of the economy, according to a new ACEEE report.
ENERGY STAR®, the voluntary labeling program that’s designed to identify and promote energy-efficient products, is so popular it has become a household work. But how many of us actually understand how a product earns the ENERGY STAR® label?
Why Utilities Should Promote Energy Efficiency: Addressing the problem of lost earnings and profit from energy efficiency programs
Traditional regulations do not give utilities much incentive to promote energy efficiency. In fact, up until recently, regulations were an obstacle to energy efficiency, because falling energy sales equated reduced revenues, an effect called “lost revenues” or “lost sales.” Utilities earnings are measured by capital invested and electricity sold, meaning incentives tend to push for increased electricity sales and expanding supply-side systems.
So how do you make energy efficiency an attractive proposal to utilities? The answer is three key policy strategies that make sure utility incentives are congruent with efficiency.