Strong commitment across Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states produces growth in energy savings, jobs, and economy
November 27, 2012 LEXINGTON, MA–The Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions are seeing unprecedented savings in electricity and natural gas use, thanks to a combined commitment to invest over $2.5 billion dollars in energy efficiency through 2013, according to a new report released today by Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships (NEEP). The second annual Regional Roundup of Energy Efficiency Policy examines overall policy trends and suggests which states are leading and lagging in capturing cost-effective energy efficiency to help meet energy demand as cleanly and cheaply as possible.
"Overall, 2012 has been a year of continued growth and maturation for energy efficiency across the region," said Natalie Hildt, manager of public policy outreach at NEEP. "Yet a slow economy and devastating storms have caused a lot of human suffering. A silver lining is that smart states like New York and Connecticut are looking at how they can rebuild more resilient and efficient buildings. This will help residents and businesses to improve comfort and control energy costs for years to come, while creating local jobs and reducing greenhouse gas emissions."
While looking at the region as a whole, the Roundup also provides summary and analysis of some of the biggest building energy efficiency successes and setbacks in individual states from Maine to Maryland, including key energy efficiency laws and regulations, and changes in funding levels for energy efficiency programs.
"The Roundup is intended to give policymakers, efficiency advocates, program administrators and other stakeholders a comparative view of efficiency progress and pitfalls across the region," said Jim O'Reilly, director of public policy at NEEP. "Along with state-level highlights, this paper reveals regional trends and shared challenges in harnessing the potential of energy efficiency to meet multiple public policy goals — controlling energy costs, improving system reliability strengthening the economy, growing jobs, improving public health and curbing greenhouse gas emissions."
*The Northeast continues to lead the nation in innovative energy policy, public and private support and per capita investment in efficiency programs.
*Even in a slow economy, much of the region continues to ramp up efficiency, with investment levels expected to reach $2.5 billion this year.
*States are grappling with the same challenges — how to fund efficiency for oil heated homes, how to coordinate state-wide programs to make access easier for customers, how to reach more homes and businesses and go deeper with efficiency projects.
*In states like New Hampshire, Maine, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, anti-regulatory interests threaten states' efforts to harness efficiency as the most cost-effective energy resource.
*In states like Massachusetts, New York, Vermont, Connecticut and Rhode Island, major efficiency commitments are helping to drive down utility costs for all, as states build the clean energy economy and make progress on their emissions reductions goals.
The full report including state-by-state information and regional data can be downloaded here or from our home page, www.neep.org.
NEEP is a non-profit organization that transforms the way we use and think about energy. Through advocacy, collaboration and education we focus on three areas where we believe energy efficiency can have the greatest impact: buildings, high efficiency products & best practices. Our unique approach helps bring together all stakeholders to accelerate energy efficiency and highlight its impacts on the region, the economy, and the planet. For more information, visit www.neep.org.