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Learn About Your State's Energy Efficiency Programs

02/24/16

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You're probably familiar with some of the federal energy efficiency programs by now. The most prominent, the Clean Power Plan, was announced last year with ambitious targets to limit carbon and other pollutants generated by the nation's electrical work. What you might not be aware of is the amount of impetus placed on the individual states to enact programs that advance the federal goals. Through the Clean Energy Incentive Program, or CEIP, states are responsible for reducing their carbon emissions by 2022 through renewable energy generation or increased efficiency measures. Read on to learn more.

States Picking up the Slack on Conservation

The Clean Power Plan sets a goal to reduce carbon emissions by 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030. Although it is a federal rule enacted by the Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Air Act, the national government doesn't actually have control over the nation's electrical work, so the plan requires the cooperation of the states to come to fruition. In turn, the states will have to work with big polluters within their borders, primarily power plants, to bring emission levels down.

The federal agency is using emission rate credits as the carrot to incentivize the conservation measures, rewarding states for their reduction in fossil fuel consumption, which the states then pass on to the individual power generators and other industry players. Other options include household and industry efficiency programs to encourage people to purchase modern appliances and otherwise reduce the consumption in their electrical work. In total, the EPA is pushing states to reduce carbon emissions by 300 million short tons.

State Help for Increasing the Efficiency of Your Electrical Work

One interesting aspect of the EPA program is that it contains extra incentives for states that focus on initiating programs in low-income communities. The exact parameters haven't been worked out yet, and various programs will still work differently in different states, but essentially the federal agency will provide twice the credits for projects that affect low-income households. That means states will have an easier time reaching their goals, and the most vulnerable residents of an area have a better chance of participating and realizing savings from the Clean Power Plan.

Regardless of what your income level is, you should keep an eye on any efficiency programs coming from your state in the coming months and years. While much of the work is aimed at power plants, other assistance may be available to homeowners to purchase new appliances, invest in residential renewable energy like solar panels or otherwise decrease both energy consumption and utility bills in the household.

Trust the Experts for All Your Home Service Needs

If you need help figuring out how to reduce your household spending on electricity, or have any other issues with your home electrical system, contact a professional electrician today.



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