Electricity Loss and Theft: Who Pays?

We fret about turning off the lights to save pennies on energy. Meanwhile, electricity worth billions of dollars gets lost or stolen on the world’s power grids every year.In industry jargon, the problem is known as ‘line loss.’ A certain amount of electricity generated by a power plant never makes it to the consumer – or at least the paying … [Read more...]

Microgrids: Coming or No?

By Elisa Wood May 6, 2013You know that experience, when you buy a new car, and suddenly you see the model everywhere? Since Superstorm Sandy I’ve had the equivalent experience with the term ‘microgrid.’Policymakers and thought leaders in the US Northeast started talking microgrid in earnest shortly after the October 2012 storm leveled … [Read more...]

The $40 Billion Hiding in US Buildings

By Elisa Wood April 29, 2013A pretty big wad of money – $40 billion – is hiding somewhere inside the lights, AC, thermostats, furnaces and fans of our offices, stores, hospitals and schools.That’s the amount of money the federal government estimates we can save annually by reducing energy use in commercial buildings 20 percent by 2020.  To … [Read more...]

New York: Getting the Price Right for Energy Efficiency

New York officials are scrutinizing the cost of energy efficiency – especially when it’s needed fast – as they prepare for the possible shutdown of a nuclear plant.Energy efficiency insiders will want to keep an eye on this public service commission proceeding for two reasons. First, it offers a potential 100 MW in business opportunity. Second, … [Read more...]

Energy Efficiency Finds Its Cell Phone: Part III

By Elisa Wood April 15, 2013The cell phone is quickly becoming a handy tool for tracking home energy use and even switching appliances on and off from afar. It also turns out to be a good way for consumers to view the inner workings of the electric grid – as ISO New England is showing.ISO-NE in September became the first grid operator to create … [Read more...]

Energy Efficiency Finds its Cell Phone: Part II

By Elisa Wood April 4, 2013If you're an energy efficiency geek and your refrigerator breaks down, you probably think, "Yes! A chance to buy a new super energy-saving model."But you're the exception. Most consumers consider price tag before ENERGY STAR certification. Human nature being what it is, they choose the cheaper model even if it costs … [Read more...]

Energy Efficiency Finds its Cell Phone

By Elisa Wood March 27, 2013Energy efficiency insiders have envied the telecommunications industry for years. After all, it produced the iPhone, Android and other products that American consumers can’t seem to live without.The telecom industry achieved this level of innovation after it deregulated. The electricity industry deregulated too, but … [Read more...]

How Energy Efficiency’s Story is Changing

By Elisa Wood March 21, 2013Not so long ago, news about energy efficiency focused on what the US could or should do, but wasn’t to save energy. It was a tale of woe.That’s no longer the case. Now, report after report tells the story of a burgeoning energy efficiency market that is achieving a surprising level of  savings.Consider a few news … [Read more...]

Energy Efficiency Loans Encounter Obstacles in the Secondary Market

By Kat Friedrich, Clean Energy Finance Center Guest Blogger, Energy Efficiency Markets March 13, 2013Although connecting energy efficiency programs and private capital may seem like an ideal partnership, program managers from New York and Pennsylvania have found it is challenging to achieve competitive investment ratings for energy efficiency … [Read more...]

Energy and Netflix’s ‘House of Cards’

By Elisa Wood March 7, 2013Netflix’s ‘House of Cards’ is the latest ‘Downton Abbey.’ Or for us older folks, it is the latest who-shot-JR Ewing – a television series that lots of people are talking about.A story of Congressional intrigue, the 13-part series has caught the attention of not only the viewing public, but also Washington … [Read more...]