Energy Efficiency, State Flexibility Under Proposed 111(d) Standard Could Boost the Economy and Reduce Emissions

Release Date: Monday, June 2, 2014

This morning, the EPA officially announced its highly anticipated 111(d) proposal for existing power plant carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions standards. Now that Gina McCarthy has signed off on the Clean Power Plan, we applaud the EPA and the Administration for embracing and promoting energy efficiency as a primary tool for emissions reduction.

The Alliance Commission on National Energy Efficiency Policy, in developing the Energy 2030 goal of doubling U.S. energy productivity by 2030, recommends that the emissions reduction benefits of energy efficiency be recognized and encouraged by air quality regulations. Utility programs, performance contracting, codes and standards, and fiscal incentives are among the energy efficiency tools available to states to help meet 111(d) objectives.

Alliance President Kateri Callahan said, “Energy efficiency is our country’s cheapest, cleanest, most abundant and most readily available energy resource. The Alliance to Save Energy will comb the proposal to identify opportunities for states to—individually and, if they so choose, jointly—use energy efficiency as a “first and best” compliance option. Building on and developing new energy efficiency policies and programs not only will save money, but also and importantly will boost state economies. By allowing and encouraging energy efficiency as a compliance mechanism, this rule has the potential to greatly advance the Nation’s energy productivity and, thus, our country’s overall competitiveness while simultaneously reducing emissions and strengthening energy reliability.”

The Alliance applauds the EPA for providing flexibility that will allow states to tailor plans and implementation for their particular contexts. The Alliance is also pleased to see states encouraged to voluntarily collaborate to address emissions reductions jointly while working to achieve greater energy reliability and affordability.

“States can use utility programs, building energy codes, industrial efficiency programs, energy service performance contracts, tax incentives, and other tools to save energy while saving money, supporting local jobs, decreasing emissions, reducing grid vulnerabilities, and modernizing buildings and industry,” said Rodney Sobin, the Alliance’s director of research and regulatory affairs.

The Alliance is pleased that the EPA is promoting energy efficiency, our nation’s number one energy resource, in the Clean Power Plan. We look forward to continued engagement with the Administration and EPA, states, businesses, non-governmental groups, and other stakeholders to advance efficiency’s role for achieving environmental, economic, and energy reliability benefits.

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