Utility conservation programs have a big environmental impact, CEE reports
According to the Consortium for Energy Efficiency, power savings programs run by Canadian and U.S. utility providers prevented 23 million metric tonnes of CO2 emissions in 2016
BOSTON—Energy savings programs run by Canadian and U.S. utility providers prevented 23 million metric tonnes of CO2 emissions in 2016.
This is according to the Consortium for Energy Efficiency (CEE), an energy efficiency think-tank, which released its yearly energy savings report on Mar. 31.
The CEE’s Annual Industry Report covers ratepayer-funded energy efficiency and demand response programs managed by electricity and gas utilities in Canada and the U.S.
According to the report, Canadian and U.S. utilities spent $9.2 billion on demand-side management (DSM) programs in 2016, which are designed to encourage consumers to make long-term habit changes and cut back on general electricity usage. $7.3 billion of these energy savings programs was spent on electricity and $1.4 billion on natural gas.
Program administrators also spent $958 million on demand response programs, which are aimed at encouraging users to make short-term reductions in response to overuse of a power grid.
Estimated gross savings for these programs in 2016 were 29,590 gigawatts of electricity and 496 million gas therms. This is the equivalent of 23.4 million metric tonnes of CO2 emissions avoided.
Data is collected by the CEE with help from the American Gas Association.