NEEP guest-blogger, Jim Merriam, Director of Efficiency Vermont, introduces five white papers by Efficiency Vermont staff and shares his perspective on strategies for the future of energy efficiency in Vermont. Efficiency Vermont provides valuable support to NEEP and to the entire Northeast energy efficiency network.
At Efficiency Vermont, we often feel stymied by the fact that energy efficiency is essentially invisible. We are well aware that the tools of our trade – insulation, caulking guns, and light ballasts – are not exactly photogenic. Over the last decade, though, there is one image that has become the de facto symbol of energy efficiency: the curly cued compact fluorescent light bulb.
by Lynn Westerlind, manager of policy and evaluation at National Grid, and Laura Schauer, a director at Tetra Tech.
While preparing this article, the authors discussed personality tests. We found that whenever we completed personality tests, the results are the same for the both of us. We are both high “E”s (extroverts). Whether at work or in our personal lives, we have both learned to partner with others with diverse strengths to achieve success. When individuals work as a team to collaborate, they are pooling their knowledge, as well as their resources and skills, to reach an overall goal. The same is true for energy efficiency collaborative groups.
Collaborative groups may consist of utility program administrators, evaluators, regulators, consumer groups and other stakeholders that support the long-term success of energy efficiency programs. Collaborative groups are a tool to optimize program design, delivery and regulatory review, and assist in the development of program processes that have the transparency and accountability in place to meet the needs of the environment in which programs operate.
“Safe!” The Uniform Methods Protocol Project rounds the bases.
NEEP caught up with Michael Li of the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and asked him a few questions about the recently released Energy Efficiency Savings Protocols, part of the Uniform Methods Project or UMP. The voluntary protocols draw from best practices used across the country and are the first national protocols to provide detailed guidance on evaluation, measurement, and verification (EM&V) for many hard-hitting energy efficiency program measures and types. Developed by DOE and the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) with Li leading the effort, the protocols help provide ground rules for program evaluation and allows for direct comparison and improved credibility of energy efficiency, much like an umpire provides in the game of baseball. Here’s what Li offered in response to our questions about this important new resource: Continue reading
2013 is off to a roaring start in terms of energy efficiency in the region, with the approval of landmark efficiency programs in five states (Mass., Conn., N.H., Maine and R.I.), a major new report by ISO-New England showing that electricity prices and consumption are falling, The proposal of nine RGGI states to lower the carbon cap by 45 percent, and several exciting pieces of legislation across the region.
NEEP is particularly heartened by signs of progress that New Hampshire might make big improvements in how it values efficiency as a resource, legislation in Massachusetts to create the region’s first oilheat efficiency fund, and in Connecticut to create a building asset rating program. Look for our Policy Tracker in a few weeks for much more on key legislative and regulatory developments.With so much going on, it’s timely that the Restructuring Roundtable is hosting a half-day of presentations and dialogue on energy efficiency at their February 15 meeting in Boston, which is open to the public. NEEP’s Executive Director Sue Coakley will join the panel to share regional perspectives, preview a new regional energy efficiency dashboard, and touch on how complementary policies like codes and standards are playing an increasingly important role in states across the Northeast.
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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 NEEP’s second annual Regional Roundup of Energy Efficiency Policy. The report 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. Continue reading
Happy Holidays from Northeast Energy Efficiency Partnerships!
Wishing you a wonderful holiday season and a New Year full of peace and happiness!
From all of us here at NEEP
Registration is now open for the 2012 EM&V Forum Annual Public Meeting, which will be held at the Washington Plaza Hotel in Washington, DC from 9:00am – 4:30pm on December 12. The objective of the Annual Public Meeting is to increase understanding and awareness of the EM&V Forum’s scope and projects through interaction among a broad range of stakeholders from across the region and beyond. The meeting agenda includes panel discussions on an array of topics relevant to policymakers, program administrators, evaluation experts, merchant providers, ISOs and RTOs, and other relevant stakeholders.
Most exciting will be the launch of the Forum’s Regional Energy Efficiency Database (REED), which will provide for consistent reporting of energy efficiency impacts to support energy and air quality policies, as well as more effective system planning across the region. Continue reading
Guest Contribution by Kevin Galligan, Program Manager at Cape Light Compact
When was the last time you paid attention to a street light? Probably only when one is burned out, right? Most of us don’t think about street lighting because we just expect it to be there when we need it.
But for cities and towns, street lighting is never far from mind. While most people drive past streetlights and don’t think twice about them, for town officials they are actually a big energy hog. But now, with new lighting technologies, street lighting holds opportunities for huge energy savings. As part of their mission to promote energy efficiency, Cape Light Compact is working with towns across the Cape and Vineyard to convert town-owned streetlights to LED fixtures. Starting in January 2013, 140 streetlights will be retrofit in both commercial and residential areas. Continue reading
As the nation strives to become greener and cleaner, Connecticut is making a conscientious effort to provide people and businesses with cheaper and more reliable energy. That’s why the state launched its most comprehensive energy efficiency initiative, Lead by Example, in 2011. Continue reading
Wellesley High School. Photo: SMMA
Roll up those sleeves and join the Green Schools Committee of USGBC MA for one (or three!) Green Apple Service projects over the next two weeks. Tour a newly built high performance MA-CHPS school or join us at Boston Latin Academy for some green rejuvenation! Help our communities support healthy, sustainable schools by participating in these free events. Continue reading