RGGI Raises $152M; Again Shows How to Make the Economics of Carbon Reduction Work

The Northeast’s long-time regional cap and trade program again is showing that yes, it is possible to make the economics of carbon reduction work – and boost energy efficiency as well. The Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) has now raised $2.26 billion with the completion of its most recent carbon allowance auction last week. The majority … [Read more...]

What is Government Doing to Spur Microgrid Growth?

What state and federal policies are spurring microgrid growth in the United States? Here's an inventory from our latest Think Microgrid report, The Energy Efficient Microgrid, which examines grid-connected microgrids and companion technologies: combined heat and power (CHP) and district energy (DE). The Obama administration created one of the … [Read more...]

Yes, States Can Cut Carbon Emissions and Boost Their Economy

States worried about whether the EPA's new Clean Power Plan will hurt them economically can breathe a sigh of relief, says a new report. The report, from Analysis Group’s electric industry and economic experts, "EPA’s Clean Power Plan: States’ Tools for Reducing Costs & Increasing Benefits to Consumers," found that states are prepared to meet … [Read more...]

How Can Critics of Carbon Dioxide Cap and Trade Explain This?

You can’t miss the swords drawn to slash the Obama administration’s new plan on carbon dioxide emissions. There are big dollar signs written on their hilts. Republican opponents, the Heartland Institute and others are brandishing warnings about hikes in electricity prices they say will come as coal-fired plants tumble under the restrictions. The … [Read more...]

What’s Ahead for New England Energy Efficiency Markets?

If you’re in the business of installing efficient light bulbs, New England is a good place to be. If you build conventional power plants, it’s not so good. And it looks like it won’t be so good in the near future either. That’s one of our takeaways from a recent report, “ISO New England Energy-Efficiency Forecast Report for 2018 to 2023,” … [Read more...]

Cap and Trade: The Secret Sauce for Top Energy Efficiency States?

The Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states win top spots again and again for  energy efficiency. Massachusetts has been number one three years running in an annual scorecard by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. And five of its neighbors were in the top 10 last year. Is there a secret sauce? One thing they all have in common is that … [Read more...]

Cold + Propane Shortage = Energy Efficiency Wake-up

There is nothing like a blast of frigid weather – and an energy shortage – to wake up the US consumer to the economic value of energy efficiency. We were caught almost napping this winter, drowsy in the confidence that we are awash in plenty of oil and natural gas. True, the US is in the middle of an energy renaissance. But the right kind of … [Read more...]

What if We Used Electricity Instead of Fossil Fuels for Buildings and Cars? Here’s a Plan…

We’ve heard fragments about the coming highly efficient, distributed energy grid. Now an influential Northeastern environmental group has tied it all together in what it calls EnergyVision, a campaign aimed at electrifying the US energy system. Released Feb. 3 by Environment Northeast, the national framework starts with successes in the … [Read more...]

New Jersey Needs Better Bridge to Energy Efficiency

Talk about slow. The Sierra Club is taking New Jersey to task for no movement on its energy efficiency portfolio standard in six years. The environmental organization has petitioned the state Board of Public Utilities to get going on the standard. The state legislature enacted a law in 2007 that allowed New Jersey to set the long-term, energy … [Read more...]

Momentum Builds for Energy Efficiency…But is the Wolf at the Door?

It says something that Ernest Moniz chose to deliver his first public talk as US energy secretary to an energy efficiency crowd. His appearance May 16, 2013 at EE Global in Washington, D.C. was a surprise of sorts. And the timing was significant. Moniz had only been confirmed as energy secretary three hours before taking the podium at the Alliance … [Read more...]