Time’s Up: We Need to Reimagine Utility Efficiency Efforts to Meet Climate Goals
- Apr 29, 2021 12:22 am GMT
Utility energy efficiency programs have a proven record of saving energy and money, but here’s an uncomfortable truth: They aren’t yet up to the immense challenge of the climate crisis. Amid a rapid rise in renewable power generation and in technology enabling demand flexibility, it’s time to restructure these efficiency efforts. Utilities need to scale these programs up and focus them on doing their vital part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
While we’re excited to see that 48 utilities have set goals of net-zero carbon emissions by 2050, few are currently making the investment decisions needed to get there, and even fewer are maximizing the emissions reductions possible from their energy-saving efforts. Meeting these goals will require an industry transformation: reforms to the utility business model, shifts in how utilities measure energy-saving progress, and new ways for regulators to prioritize approaches that reduce emissions.
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