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2020 USEER

Lost in the madness of the COVID-19 pandemic, we got some encouraging news earlier this week with the release of the 2020 U.S. Energy and Employment Report (USEER) , which found that energy efficiency is not just among the largest employers in the energy sector but also added more new jobs over the last five years than any other energy industry.

The timing of the report – just as the government was releasing unprecedented unemployment data showing massive job losses resulting from COVID-19 – served to drive home just what is at stake in the energy efficiency industry right now. Most of these jobs are in construction– contractors going into homes and businesses to upgrade insulation, duct work, windows, HVAC equipment,...

Construction worker

I am writing this (and are you are probably reading it) from home after the Alliance initiated a work-from-home policy on March 12 to protect our employees, families, and Associates. In the meantime, the COVID-19 emergency response is in full swing around the world. In the U.S., federal, state, and local governments are responding to both the immediate health threat and the growing economic crisis. It’s clear that this uncertain time is going to require an unprecedented response, and that will include in the efficiency sector.

So far, Congress has passed two emergency response bills to help with the immediate impacts of COVID-19, and a third federal stimulus bill is in the works to provide needed support to individuals, small businesses, healthcare workers, and federal agencies...

EE Global

The following is a note from Clay Nesler, Interim President, regarding EE Global Forum.

I am writing to you from Washington, D.C., where COVID-19 is spurring new restrictions daily on travel and mass gatherings. With EE Global still six weeks away, it is difficult to know what the state of affairs will be at that time. I realize that many of our friends across the globe are grappling with the same uncertainty. Fortunately, the format of EE Global allows us to be able to wait a bit longer than most organizers to decide whether to cancel or postpone.

In the meantime, we are making plans to enable a large number of EE Global attendees to participate remotely. Our venue this year, Convene, is a state-of-the-art facility that will allow us to live-stream all of our sessions...

Active Efficiency
The Active Efficiency Collaborative has set out to modernize energy efficiency to lay the foundation for a more integrated and time-dependent energy system. On March 6, the Active Efficiency Steering Committee held its inaugural meeting and set the tone for cross-sector coordination and mutual support for Collaborative members.
COP 25

When I was at the UN Climate Change Conference last year in Madrid, I heard about a number of reports or tools that could help governments develop a roadmap to achieve the 1.5C target by 2050. Many of these are technology-oriented and focus on innovations such as energy storage and carbon capture and storage while others are policy-oriented, focusing on regulatory and market-based interventions. The one thing they all seem to have in common is a lack of focus on energy efficiency. When asked about the role of energy efficiency in the climate solution, the answer was invariably an afterthought: “Oh yeah, efficiency…of course.”

One of the most impressive tools I saw was from Climate Interactive , which included a...

Alliance blog

This piece was originally posted in Real Clear Energy. Read the full op-ed.

Let’s say you’re in the market for a new cell phone.

One store is offering a great price of $50, but it comes with a bill of $100 per month. The store next door is charging $100 upfront, but the monthly fees are just $50 per month. Most people would choose option two. You’d break even in the first month and save $550 over the course of the first year.

Consumers face a similar dynamic when buying a house. The biggest expense after the mortgage payment is usually the energy bill. Drafty, leaky and poorly insulated homes...

Car on highway

It’s no secret that our nation’s infrastructure is badly in need of investment: The American Society of Civil Engineers gave it a D+ score in its 2017 report card . And it’s an issue voters care about: More than 90 percent of swing state voters believe that the next president should prioritize bold infrastructure investments.

While all the Democratic presidential primary frontrunners have promised meat-and-potatoes investments – think building and repairing highways, roads, and bridges – we were curious if their plans...

PowerSave Schools

We’re facing a historic turning point. The decisions we make in the next several years about how we generate and use energy will have profound impacts on future generations. No one feels this more than today’s students, who are voicing increasingly concern about climate change, and whose understanding and stewardship of energy resources will help define our shared future. Students will play a critical role in achieving our energy goals, both in their ability to affect near-term behavior change and to help lead a longer-term energy transition.

That is why the Alliance sees K-12 education not just as a social good, but a social imperative. Through our PowerSave Schools program, our goal is to teach students, our future leaders, the fundamentals of energy efficiency, which is the...

50x50 Transportation Commission Launch
It’s well acknowledged that our transportation sector is on the verge of a major transformation. To capitalize on this unprecedented opportunity and create a shared vision for the path forward, the Alliance convened a partnership of public and private stakeholders including automakers, utilities, public interest groups, product manufacturers, and technology providers two years ago with the goal to meet evolving transportation needs while reducing energy use 50 percent by 2050 – or, to put it simply, “50x50.” Here's a look at what the 50x50 Commission on U.S. Transportation Sector Efficiency accomplished.
Clay Nesler

We’ve seen significant progress in clean energy innovation and investment in the last decade, that much is clear, but where do we really stand? I recently had the pleasure of participating in a launch event for the 2020 Sustainable Energy in America Factbook produced for the Business Council for Sustainable Energy by Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The headliners of the event were renewable energy, which doubled installed wind and solar capacity, and natural gas, which went from meeting 24% of power generation needs to 38% in a decade.

The story of energy efficiency is a bit more nuanced, confirming an urgent need for greater action. The Factbook demonstrated that energy efficiency – the cheapest, most impactful climate...