EmPOWER Maryland To Reduce Energy Consumption 15 Percent by 2015

July 16, 2007

Maryland Governor Martin O'Malley has announced new energy efficiency goals intended to save taxpayers money and reduce pollution. The EmPOWER Maryland initiative aims to reduce state government energy consumption by 15 percent by 2015.

The initiative is composed of seven steps:

  • Improve Building Operations. Reducing energy use by 5 percent by improving building operations, replacing incandescent lights with compact fluorescent lights, and asking each state employee to reduce energy use.
  • Expand Use of Energy Performance Contracting (ESPC). Agencies will hire energy service companies to develop, install, and finance projects designed to improve the energy efficiency and lower maintenance costs for facilities.
  • Increase the State Agency Loan Program. The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) will expand the State Agency Loan Program by 50 percent to $1.5 million in fiscal year 2008. By augmenting this zero interest revolving loan program, state agencies will avoid an additional $50,000 in electricity bills, resulting in total annual avoided costs of at least $150,000. Typical projects include energy efficient lighting, controls, heating, and ventilation and air conditioning.
  • Require Energy Efficient Buildings. All new state buildings over 20,000 square feet will be required to be more energy efficient, based on a review of the upcoming recommendations of the Maryland Green Building Task Force.
  • Purchase ENERGY STARĀ® Products. Purchasing ENERGY STAR qualified products where available, as well as environmentally friendly cleaning and maintenance products, will save energy and reduce the state's environmental footprint.
  • Expand Community Energy Loan Program. MEA will expand the Community Energy Loan Program (CELP) by 33 percent to $2 million in fiscal year 2008. CELP provides low interest revolving loans to local governments and nonprofit organizations to install energy efficient improvements. By adding an additional $500,000 to the CELP program for fiscal year 2008, MEA can provide additional loans to help more hospitals, schools and local governments finance energy efficiency investments.
  • Ensure Accountability. By incorporating energy data into StateStat, the Maryland statistics-based government management process, it will be easier for state agencies to track their progress and assist in achieving the energy efficiency goals. State agencies will be expected to designate energy managers, conduct energy consumption analyses, and update energy conservation plans.

In addition to announcing the energy efficiency goals, O'Malley also made known his appointment of Hatim N. Jabaji as the director of the Office of Energy Performance and Conservation in the Maryland Department of General Services (DGS). Jabaji will lead DGS initiatives to reduce power consumption in state government.

For more information, see the governor's July 2 press release (PDF 43 KB). Download Adobe Reader.

To read more about renewable energy and energy efficiency projects in Maryland, see: