State Utility Regulation and Clean Energy
- July 15 - SEE Action Blueprints released
The Smart Grid Stakeholder Roundtable’s Perspectives for Utilities and Others Implementing Smart Grids (PDF) (28 pp, 840K, About PDF) was released in September 2009. This document summarizes the perspectives of a group of state agencies, consumers, utilities, environmental groups, and others to help promote an effective dialogue among various stakeholders and smart grid project developers. The U.S. Department of Energy and EPA facilitated the roundtable.
More than half of U.S. carbon emissions are due to electricity and natural gas consumption. State utility regulation can support greenhouse gas emission reductions by encouraging utilities, businesses, and homeowners to reduce their energy use and adopt clean energy alternatives. Over the past several years, states have adopted a number of policies and regulations to remove barriers and increase energy efficiency by encouraging the use of renewable energy and clean distributed generation, such as combined heat and power.
Since 2005, EPA has supported state utility regulators who want to explore greater use of clean energy for its economic and environmental benefits. EPA’s activities include:
- State and Local Energy Efficiency Action Network
- National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency
- State and Local Climate and Energy Program
- Other EPA Clean Energy Partnership Programs
State and Local Energy Efficiency Action Network
The State and Local Energy Efficiency Action (SEE Action) Network is a state and local effort facilitated by the federal government that helps states, utilities, and other local stakeholders take energy efficiency to scale and achieve all cost-effective energy efficiency by 2020. This initiative has engaged diverse stakeholders in the development and implementation of eight energy efficiency blueprints across the residential, commercial, and industrial sectors, as well as key crosscutting topics, including evaluation, measurement and verification; financing; building codes; consumer information and behavior; and utility motivation and energy efficiency.
National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency
From 2005 to 2010, EPA and the U.S. Department of Energy facilitated the National Action Plan for Energy Efficiency, a private-public initiative to create a sustainable, aggressive national commitment to energy efficiency through gas and electric utilities, their regulators, and other partner organizations. The Action Plan was led by a diverse Leadership Group of more than 60 leading gas and electric utilities, state agencies, energy consumers, energy service providers, and environmental/energy efficiency organizations. Key accomplishments include: five consensus policy recommendations, more than 120 commitments to energy efficiency across 49 states, a comprehensive set of technical documents and tools to help states advance efficiency, and a Vision for 2025 framework for implementing the five Action Plan recommendations.
State and Local Climate and Energy Program
The State and Local Climate and Energy Program helps state, local, and tribal governments develop policies and programs that can reduce greenhouse gas emissions, lower energy costs, improve air quality and public health, and help achieve economic development goals. EPA provides technical assistance, peer exchange opportunities, analytical tools, and outreach support.
Other EPA Clean Energy Partnership Programs
- ENERGY STAR
- Green Power Partnership
- Combined Heat and Power Partnership
- Additional EPA resources for state and local governments