May 24, 2007

Tying Energy Efficiency to Renewable Energy

The American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) has teamed up with the American Council for an Energy-Efficency Economy (ACE3) to make a statement that creating new renewable energy technologies (RE) will not be enough to achieve national and international goals to meet energy demands while reducing our dependence on carbon positive fossil fuel systems. We also have a responsibility to develop energy efficiency (EE) standards and advanced technologies to mitigate the demand for energy and reduce carbon emissions.

This report, while limiting its scope to renewable electricity, does a good job of not only describing the synergies possible between RE and EE, but also provides numerous case studies of progressive state policies, public benefit funding, and corporations who have demonstrated how these synergies can be implemented.

Below are the conclusions of the report. The full report is available for download from the ACEEE website.

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ENERGY EFFICIENCY INVESTMENTS AND RENEWABLE ENERGY PURCHASES TOGETHER ARE "TWIN PILLARS" IN REDUCING CARBON EMISSIONS
Bill Prindle and Maggie Eldridge,
American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy
Mike Eckhardt and Alyssa Frederick,
American Council on Renewable Energy

Energy efficiency and renewable energy are the cornerstones of sustainable energy policy. Demand growth for energy must be brought into a sustainable range, so that clean renewable energy technologies can begin to “catch up” with energy demand. If energy demand grows too fast, no supply technology, no matter how clean, will be able to substantially reduce fossil fuel consumption.

Energy efficiency and renewables thus must go hand in hand in any clean energy future. Fortunately, pursuing them jointly offers several important synergies over pursuing one to the exclusion of the other, such as:

• Lower total energy cost—A combined efficiency/renewables resource portfolio is typically less expensive than a renewables-only portfolio, and also generates greater total resource impacts;

• Better timing—Efficiency can typically be deployed quickly, achieving important impacts in the near and mid terms; renewables can take longer to deploy, but may ultimately deliver larger resource impacts;

• Electricity price stability—Efficiency and renewables provide complementary price hedges in power markets, by both moderating demand and diversifying fuel sources;

• Electric system reliability—Energy efficiency can reduce peak demand, reducing the risk of blackouts, while renewables diversify generation sources, and both efficiency and renewables can provide locational benefits in the form of distributed generation; and

• Regional resource balance—While renewables’ availability varies from region to region, energy efficiency is consistently available in end-use sectors across the country. Pursuing both efficiency and renewable resources in tandem thus makes it easier to attain national energy resource targets in any given state.

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2 comments:

JOSE LUIS said...

We are working in Mexico with Biotechnologies to solved the polluted waters such like drians, leftstations pump, lakes, lagoons and waste tratment plants. Also we are improving in site e-waste technologies and take awarness over depletion with heavy metals in all companies branches electronic and electric burden.
I comment this because is necesary that all people makes enhance awarness and this outbreake with environmental approach; and everybody known that in Mexico, also make changes in theirs wastes.
I waiting attain with this comment advocating for a better world.
Congratulations for your scope in energy.
Best regards
Jose Luis Gonzalez

C. Scott Miller said...

Having worked as a consultant to a major water utility in Southern California, I am aware of the heroic engineering efforts that are required to alleviate wastewater pollution while providing for the needs of millions of people.

I write frequently about the role biotechnologies can play in landfill diversion - and the many hurdles. Usually these articles appear in the BIOwaste Blog. My home "town" of Los Angeles is, I believe, a crucible for dealing with these issues and it is interesting to monitor the activities of local utilities to tackle these problems.

I hope Mexico and U.S. utilities can work together by sharing information, techniques, policy tools, and environmental quality resources - particularly along the border and in major cities where the problems have grown egregious.

I salute your efforts. Write again.