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Efficient Reading: Bi-Weekly Digest of the Top Content Submitted to the Energy Efficiency Group in Energy Central- January 9, 2020

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Happy New Year to all the members of the Energy Efficiency Group of Energy Central. 2019 was no doubt a landmark year in the energy sector, and there were numerous headlines that resonated over the months. With the beginning of 2020, it’s anyone’s guess as to what will be the dominant energy efficiency topics that capture our attention—but I know I’m excited to find out! (And as a quick plug—if you have certain energy efficiency trends that you expect to capture headlines, I’d recommend you submit them to Energy Central’s upcoming Hot Topic Special Issue Newsletter on ‘2020 Power Industry Predictions and Trends,’ more information can be found here:

But until we see what hot efficiency stories dominate conversations across this group, it’s first time to do another look back at what the most compelling stories were that got submitted to the Energy Efficiency Group of Energy Central over the last two weeks. Let’s dive in to another edition of ‘Efficient Reading’!

Matt Chester

Community Manager


DOE – EISA Lighting Update Gets a Court Date

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One of the esteemed members of Energy Central’s network of experts, Matt Bowgren (see my interview with him from last Fall here), has been doing a diligent and thoughtful job of keeping the community apprised of developments in the energy efficiency regulation space from the U.S. Department of Energy. In this final post before the New Year, Matt outlines the next chapter of DOE’s regulations on general service lamps, which is a court date and a due date for briefs of March 16 of this year. While numerous states and environmental justice groups submitted petitions to block the coming move on lighting regulations, which would remove from coverage millions of light bulbs and thus allow more inefficient bulbs to remain on the market, Matt opines that these petitions are highly unlikely to be granted, but he does offer advice on how to follow this case for yourself.

If you find yourself drawn into the lighting regulations and the back and forth between the Trump administration and those pushing for more stringent regulations, check out this post and be sure to follow Matt on Energy Central as I’m sure he’ll continue to keep us all updated.  

New Mexico leads the US in energy efficiency jobs

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Within the energy efficiency space, one of the greatest draws beyond the pure energy (and money) savings that are available is the ability to create new and valuable jobs. In this post, Ben Schultz breaks down the recent jobs report that shows that in 2018 over a dozen states saw their availability of energy efficiency jobs increase by 5% or more, led by New Mexico, Colorado, New Jersey, Nevada, and Oklahoma. These numbers are no blip on the radar, but are instead a sign of things to come.

I recommend checking out this article, and also reading (and contributing!) in the comments where Ben and a commenter have an interesting back and forth on the value of efficiency vs. clean energy and the government’s role in these areas.


The Pot Business has an Energy Efficiency Problem

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While jobs and regulations are and have long been common topics in the energy efficiency space, this next article from Henry Craver dives into a more nascent topic and one that’s sure to raise some eyebrows: the energy efficiency needs and implications of the marijuana growing business. As cannabis has been legalized and regulated across more states in the country, the now legitimate business is bringing to light some issues regarding the energy used for the cultivation of the plant. Not wanting largely increased (and wasted) energy become a black eye on the legalized weed front, Henry outlines how some are starting to target energy efficiency regulations for cannabis—starting with Massachusetts and their efforts to align legalized marijuana with goals to decrease carbon emissions.

The Tennessee Titan Supercomputer

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Last but not least I had to throw in a shoutout to this article on the Titan supercomputer at Oak Ridge National Laboratory from Nevelyn Black. Being located in Oak Ridge, Tennessee, means this computer is aptly named the Tennessee Titan—making it a great week for supercomputers of the name as well as underdog NFL teams who took down the reigning champions! But what does it all have to do with efficiency? Well, read Nevelyn’s article and you’ll see the interesting way supercomputers are being used to model efficiency scenarios that can break open new opportunities to save energy!



That’s it for this edition of ‘Efficient Reading.’ If you want to be featured in a future issue, be sure to submit content to the Energy Efficiency Group! If you think I missed a key story from the past few weeks, let me know in the comments below. And please feel free to share this article with your colleagues to show them what the Energy Efficiency Group brings to you!


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