Chapter 2

Utility Energy Efficiency Programs

Lessons from the Past, Opportunities for the Future

Steven Nadel, Executive Director, American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy

1 Introduction

Utility energy efficiency programs in the United States began with limited efforts following the 1973 Arab oil embargo. Programs became more common in the 1980s and 1990s and following retrenchment in the second half of the 1990s, have rapidly grown since about 2005. In 2010, approximately $4.6 billion was invested in U.S. electric sector energy efficiency programs – plus an additional $0.9 billion in natural gas programs [1]. Spending on energy efficiency programs over time is summarized in Figure 2.1. In 2010, these programs reduced U.S. electricity ...

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