Glad Tidings for Utilities: Energy Efficiency Programs and Utility Profits Can Go Hand in Hand

(This post originally appeared on the ACEEE Blog.) One of the foundations of ACEEE’s work is that energy efficiency has proven to be typically the cheapest, cleanest energy resource available. Most households, businesses and industries have existing opportunities for a variety of investments in energy-efficient technologies that yield strong … [Read more...]

How Washington, D.C. Is Overcoming the Great Energy Efficiency Dilemma

It is hard to see the business sense in asking a company to sell less of its product. Yet, that is pretty much how the US handles energy efficiency. Call it the great dilemma of energy efficiency: Utilities make their profits selling energy. Government asks them to sell less to achieve state energy efficiency goals. “You are asking a for-profit … [Read more...]

Making Energy Efficiency Visible

Would you pay for something that you can’t see? Probably not. That’s a big problem when it comes to energy efficiency projects. Most of the time, energy efficiency is invisible, and sometimes it doesn’t feel quite real. But energy efficiency is real, and now circuit-level metering can prove it. Building meter data is great, but… When an efficiency … [Read more...]

Can Opower’s Energy Efficiency Program Fill the CFL Gap?

Utilities have an energy efficiency challenge on their hands, and Opower says it can help them solve it. Here’s the problem: Utilities, many of which are required to meet energy efficiency targets, are finding it harder and harder to meet those targets, especially now that they generally don’t get credit for handing out compact fluorescent lights … [Read more...]

Goodbye Two Guys and a Truck, Hello the Nation. Growing an Energy Efficiency Installation Business Big

It’s commonly held that a small business model best suits energy efficiency installation, what’s dubbed ‘two guys and a truck.’ But a Philadelphia company is intent on showing that scale is possible in the US – national scale. The Mark Group USA is quickly expanding beyond its Pennsylvania base with an eye toward becoming a national energy … [Read more...]

Averting the Utility Death Spiral: GE’s Idea

It's odd the way we pay utilities, especially in an era when saving energy is so important. Utilities earn revenue based on their electricity sales. Yet we ask – or even demand – that they encourage customers to buy less electricity by using smart thermostats, efficient lighting, and the like. Few businesses find themselves in such an odd … [Read more...]

Energy Efficiency Firms Lead Worldwide Clean Technology List

The new Global Cleantech 100 list of private companies breaking barriers with their clean technology ideas and executions across the worldwide economy finds that energy efficiency companies not only continue to dominate the list, but are growing in influence. For the past five years, the Cleantech Group has published an inventory of 100 companies … [Read more...]

WegoWise: Surprise Lessons from a Massive Database on Buildings

With data comes wisdom. And true to its name, WegoWise has plenty of both. The Boston-based software company has amassed what it describes as the largest energy-related database on North America’s multi-family buildings. That’s 16,500 buildings, accounting for over 400 million square feet (and growing). What’s the data say? Energy efficiency … [Read more...]

RFP: Southern California Edison Seeks Energy Efficiency, Demand Response…

Southern California Edison (SCE) launched a request for proposals for local capacity requirements (LCR) for resources that will help enhance the reliability of the power grid in specific geographic locations. SCE is seeking new resources to replace aging gas-fired power generation resources that use ocean water (also known as “once-through … [Read more...]

Great Energy News: What’s America’s Most Productive, Cost-Effective Resource?

As we near the 40th anniversary of the first OPEC oil embargo, which plunged the United States into a historic energy crisis, NRDC is issuing its first annual energy and environment report. It shows that our overall energy status has never been stronger in terms of both reliability and national security. Despite America’s (Amazingly) Good Energy … [Read more...]