In partnership with AESP: The increasing roles of DERs, connected technology and Big Data are driving rapid change in energy efficiency. As we shape the Utility of the future, this community will help you keep up with the latest developments. 


How Biden Wants to Promote Energy Efficiency

image credit: Photo 172244181 © Andrew Cline |

Karen Marcus's picture
Freelance Researcher and Writer Final Draft Communications, LLC

In addition to serving as an Energy Central Community Manager, Karen Marcus has nearly 25 years of experience as a content developer within the energy and technology industries. She has worked...

  • Member since 2017
  • 309 items added with 240,947 views

As the pandemic winds down and the incoming Biden administration ramps up in the coming months, utilities and their business and residential customers will have the opportunity to create new programs for increasing energy efficiency (EE). These efforts will be easier with federal support.

While having a plan and implementing it are two different things, the Biden-Harris campaign website includes a detailed section dedicated to The Biden Plan to Build a Modern, Sustainable Infrastructure and an Equitable Clean Energy Future. Let’s take a look at how the plan addresses EE specifically.

Your access to Member Features is limited.

EE in Buildings

The Biden plan includes several key elements, including building a modern infrastructure, achieving a carbon pollution-free power sector by 2035, pursuing a historic investment in clean energy innovation, and making dramatic investments in EE in buildings. The latter includes completing 4 million retrofits and building 1.5 million new affordable homes.

In addition to making “the places we live, work, and learn healthier, and [reducing] electricity bills for families, businesses, and local governments,” this aspect of the plan is expected to create at least 1 million construction, engineering, and manufacturing jobs. Additionally, as we emerge from COVID-19, the incoming administration is already considering that something similar could happen again, stating that upgrading the building sector “will improve indoor air quality and indoor environmental health, thus making our building safer in the face of future pandemics.”

Investment in EE

The housing plan is based on increasing the level of federal investment in “new affordable, accessible housing construction — including homes for low-income Americans, minority communities, veterans, the elderly, and persons with disabilities.” The plan calls for these homes to be energy efficient from the start, saving families up to $500 per year.

Additionally, the plan calls for “disadvantaged communities to receive 40% of overall benefits of spending in the areas of clean energy and energy efficiency deployment.”

Other Actions

The Biden plan includes offering tax incentives known to generate EE. For example, according to CNBC, Biden “proposes to extend existing tax credits to encourage utilities and private power developers to build more wind and solar energy production plants…. He would also extend the $7,500 tax credit for buyers of electric cars.”

Finally, the plan includes the establishment of a “technology-neutral Energy Efficiency and Clean Electricity Standard (EECES) for utilities and grid operators.” According to Kirkland & Ellis, the standard will likely “be loosely based on the renewable portfolio standard and clean energy standard programs various states have had in place for many years.”

In a recent press release, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) welcomes Biden’s “commitment to scale up energy efficiency and confront the climate crisis.” It states, “His election offers the United States a historic opportunity to use energy efficiency to deliver the urgent and bold action needed to cut greenhouse gas emissions.” The coming weeks and months will tell what the next Congress looks like and how willing it is to pass legislation to support Biden’s EE-friendly ideas.

What do you think of Biden’s energy efficiency plans? Please share in the comments.


Spell checking: Press the CTRL or COMMAND key then click on the underlined misspelled word.
Matt Chester's picture
Matt Chester on Nov 20, 2020

Odd-- I don't see any mention of those tiny, tiny windows President Trump said would be a part of a Biden building efficiency plan!

Get Published - Build a Following

The Energy Central Power Industry Network is based on one core idea - power industry professionals helping each other and advancing the industry by sharing and learning from each other.

If you have an experience or insight to share or have learned something from a conference or seminar, your peers and colleagues on Energy Central want to hear about it. It's also easy to share a link to an article you've liked or an industry resource that you think would be helpful.

                 Learn more about posting on Energy Central »