PROVIDENCE — Rhode Island has taken first place in the utility-sector energy efficiency programs and policy category of the 2016 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, released Tuesday by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE), a national nonpartisan organization. In energy efficiency overall, Rhode Island ranks fourth behind Massachusetts and California (tied for #1), and Vermont (#3). This is the fourth year that Rhode Island has ranked in the top five states.
Rhode Island’s Least Cost Procurement law is primarily responsible for the state’s continued leadership on energy efficiency. First implemented 9 years ago and extended for another 5 years last summer, the policy states that distribution companies cannot acquire new electric or natural gas supply until “all-cost effective” energy efficiency measures have been exhausted.
“By investing in low-cost energy efficiency instead of expensive electricity and natural gas, Rhode Island lowers energy bills and spurs economic growth,” said Daniel Sosland, President of Acadia Center. “Thus the whole state benefits when Rhode Island leads on energy efficiency,” said Sosland
“Rhode Island has learned that energy efficiency is critical for growing our economy and putting Rhode Islanders to work,” said Abigail Anthony, Rhode Island Director with Acadia Center. “Energy efficiency reduces the cost of doing business in Rhode Island, and when residents spend less money on energy, they have more left in their paycheck to spend locally on other things.”
Rhode Island’s energy efficiency investment since 2008 will create 23,764 job-years of employment economy-wide and add $2.67 billion to Gross State Product. In 2015, 1,009 companies and 696 full-time equivalent jobs were directly involved with the state’s energy efficiency programs, with 79% of those companies located in Rhode Island.
Since 2008, Rhode Island has invested over $558 million in energy efficiency and consumers have realized $1.99 billion in economic benefits. In its 2016 Energy Efficiency Plan, National Grid proposed investing over $83 million in cost-effective efficiency programs to deliver electric savings that are 47% less expensive than the cost of supply, and natural gas savings that are 15% less than the cost of supply. The investments in 2016 will generate more than $256.1 million in direct benefits over the life of the efficiency measures, and add over $386.9 million to Rhode Island’s Gross State Product (GSP) and 4,220 job-years of employment. Acadia Center is currently developing the 2017 Energy Efficiency Plan along with key stakeholders including National Grid, the Office of Energy Resources, the Division of Public Utilities and Carriers, Emerald Cities, People’s Power & Light, and The Energy Council of Rhode Island.
Acadia Center is a member of the Energy Efficiency Resource Management Council (EERMC), the stakeholder council charged with assisting with the development, implementation, and review of energy efficiency programs in Rhode Island. The EERMC is critical to the success of energy efficiency in the states, and Acadia Center looks forward to working with fellow members, utilities and other stakeholders to make sure that the plans are implemented effectively to deliver cost savings through lower utility bills, emissions reductions, and clean energy job growth, in addition to broader economic benefits.
See the Scorecard at: http://aceee.org/state-policy/scorecard
Acadia Center is a non-profit, research and advocacy organization committed to advancing the clean energy future. Acadia Center is at the forefront of efforts to build clean, low-carbon and consumer-friendly economies. Acadia Center provides accurate and reliable information, and offers a real-world and comprehensive approach to problem solving through innovation and collaboration.