ACEEE: California Leads the Country in Energy Efficiency Policies
California topped the 2009 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard, recently released by American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE). The third annual edition of the report from the nonprofit ranks states in six energy efficiency categories: utility-sector and public benefits programs and policies; transportation polices; building energy codes; combined heat and power; state government initiatives; and appliance efficiency standards. In the new scorecard, Massachusetts and Connecticut land in second and third place, respectively, while the states at the bottom of the list include Mississippi, North Dakota, and Wyoming.
The report lauds the states of Colorado, Delaware, Maine, South Dakota, and Tennessee for greatly improving their ranking in 2009. According to the ACEEE, a variety of efforts boosted the rankings of those states, including the adoption of new building energy codes and the setting of new energy savings targets. For instance, Maine moved up 9 spots to number 10 through the increased efforts of Efficiency Maine (the agency that delivers the state's energy efficiency programs), the adoption of building energy codes, land-use planning management, and other activities. The report also notes a growing trend toward Energy Efficiency Resource Standards (EERS), which set binding energy savings goals for utilities. In late 2008 and in the first half of 2009, Delaware, Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania passed laws establishing EERS targets. See the ACEEE press release and the 2009 State Energy Efficiency Scorecard.