Utility Customer-Funded Programs

In many states, policies such as integrated resource planning requirements and energy efficiency resource standards require utilities to evaluate and invest in energy efficiency and other demand-side resources as a cost-effective alternative to supply-side resources. State policies also may require evaluation of demand-side resources as “non-wires alternatives” to defer or avoid costly transmission and distribution system upgrades. EMP tracks and analyzes trends in utility ratepayer-funded energy efficiency programs and enabling policies, and provides technical and policy support to regional authorities, state regulatory commissions, and program administrators by analyzing current practices and projected future spending and savings for efficiency programs.

EMP also has developed tools to help utilities and other program administrators report spending and program impacts.

Cost Effectiveness for Energy Efficiency Programs

Berkeley Lab researches the ways in which energy efficiency program administrators screen energy-saving measures and programs for cost effectiveness. This research includes examinations of cost-effectiveness policy and practice and the provision of basic cost-effectiveness tools for illuminating these issues.

What It Costs to Save Energy

Assessing the cost of energy savings can be a complicated, multilayered process. To inform the efforts of policy makers, program administrators, and other industry stakeholders to evaluate energy costs, the EMP Group tracks and analyzes energy efficiency policies and programs. It maintains the Berkeley Lab Demand-Side Management (DSM) Program Database—now containing nearly 6,000 program-years of program spending and impacts data from 36 states—and uses it to characterize and inventory efficiency programs and to calculate and report on the cost of saving energy.

Projections of Spending and Energy Savings

The EMP Group publishes projections of energy efficiency activities funded by utility customers. The group develops policy and program scenarios and uses those to model efficiency program spending and energy savings.

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